Despite the whinging of a certain Globe columnist with a decidedly WASPy view of our multi-ethnic city, police Chief Bill Blair's investigation into the soccer melee that stopped this city cold a couple of weeks ago leaves many questions unanswered.
The Professional Standards Unit's probe into the fracas that left one soccer player tasered after the Chile-Argentina match on July 19 found no wrongdoing on the part of police.
No surprise. Mere hours after the incident exploded onto the front pages , t he chief himself declared that his officers acted in accordance with their training.
His pronouncement made it clear that a thorough investigation of the matter is unlikely.
Missing from Blair's one-page statement Monday, July 30, which praises his officers for conducting themselves "professionally, with an immense amount of restraint," is any mention of what the force could have done, or could do in future, to de-escalate similar situations.
The statement says police intervened "at the first sign of trouble, but members of the Chilean team not only refused to stop their aggressive behaviour, but engaged in conduct that inflamed the situation." Would Spanish-speaking officers have helped defuse the situation?
It seems unbelievable that officers were "punched... spat on and kicked in the groin," as Blair says, yet no charges were laid against any of those allegedly involved in aggressive behaviour toward the cops, or against others who allegedly threw projectiles, including D-cell batteries and cans of deodorant, at police.
Blair's claim that "all" witnesses interviewed by police "reported that the conduct and actions of my officers were appropriate, necessary and commendable," leaves us wondering
Obviously, the cops didn't bother to canvas those who were vicitimized by police actions.
Blair should be commended for at least appearing to be sensitive to the concerns expressed by the Chilean community. But in the end he did not give them what they were asking for: a truly independent investigation.