Constable James Forcillo arrives at a Toronto courthouse on July 28, 2016 to be sentenced for the attempted murder of 18-year-old Sammy Yatim in 2013. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Michelle Siu

Toronto cop convicted in death of teen seeks to appeal case to Supreme Court

Const. James Forcillo fired two separate volleys at 18-year-old Sammy Yatim, who was standing alone and holding a small knife.

A Toronto police officer convicted of attempted murder in the shooting death of a troubled teen on an empty streetcar is seeking leave to bring his case before Canada’s top court.

Const. James Forcillo fired two separate volleys at 18-year-old Sammy Yatim, who was standing alone and holding a small knife, in an incident that ignited public outrage after a bystander’s video came to light.

In 2016, a jury acquitted Forcillo of the more serious charge of second-degree murder related to the first volley of shots — which killed the teen — but found him guilty of attempted murder related to the second hail of bullets, fired seconds later while Yatim was lying on his back.

Lawyers for Forcillo challenged the ruling but Ontario’s top court dismissed the appeal in April.

In upholding Forcillo’s conviction and sentence, Ontario’s Court of Appeal found Forcillo’s second round of shots was “clearly unnecessary and excessive.”

His legal team is now seeking to challenge the appeal court decision, arguing that the first and second volleys were “artificially” divided into two separate events, leading to the separate charges.

Michael Lacy, Joseph Wilkinson and Bryan Badali are asking the Supreme Court to decide whether prosecutors were required to prove that the first and second rounds of shots were two different “transactions.”

They are also contesting Forcillo’s initial six-year sentence, which was a year longer than the mandatory minimum.

Related: 2017: Appeal set for Const. James Forcillo, convicted in Sammy Yatim shooting

In their application to the court, the lawyers write that mandatory minimum sentences are intended to deter people from committing crimes.

But the lawyers argue that when someone carrying a firearm legally uses it in good faith — as they suggest Forcillo did — that person is not deterred because they believe they’re obeying the law and therefore would not go to prison.

The Crown has 30 days to respond to the application.

The court has said it takes an average of three months to decide on leave applications after they are filed.

Forcillo recently had six months added to his sentence after pleading guilty to perjury. He had also been charged with breaching the conditions of his bail while awaiting the Ontario Court of Appeal decision, along with obstruction of justice, but those charges were dropped after he entered the guilty plea.

Nicole Thompson, The Canadian Press

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Just Posted

More sailings coming to 10 BC Ferries’ routes

Transportation Minister Claire Trevena said the sailings were originally cut in 2014

Baby makes surprise arrival in car on Sheep Creek Hill

Meldrum Creek woman delivers in the passenger seat

Emergency management top priority for CCRD

MOU will be the first of its kind in B.C.

Spring fishery closures mulled for south coast

Fewer fish are returning to rivers and more conservation needed, say feds

B.C. BUDGET: Surplus $374 million after bailouts of BC Hydro, ICBC

Growth projected stronger in 2020, Finance Minister Carole James says

National Energy Board approves Trans Mountain pipeline again

Next step includes cabinet voting on the controversial expansion

Girl heard saying ‘Help my Dad’ in suspicious radio message on Vancouver Island

Police asking for help following mysterious signals from somewhere between Comox and Sayward

Reports of rashes prompt closure of all Harrison Hot Springs pools

Public pool available after Fraser Health shut down all five mineral pools until further notice

No treatment for highly infectious measles, says doctor

10 cases of measles confirmed in Vancouver as of Friday

Two more measles cases confirmed in Vancouver

It brings the number of total cases within the city connected to the outbreak to ten

B.C. Special Olympics officially underway in Vernon

Athlete’s Oath: “Let me win. But if I cannot win, let me be brave in the attempt.”

Vancouver Aquarium wants your help to name a baby killer whale

The public helped name Springer’s first calf, Spirit, and is being asked to help with the second

Guards protest firing of fellow officers charged with assault at B.C. prison

Corrections officers demonstrated in Maple Ridge on Friday afternoon

Skier dies at Revelstoke Mountain Resort

Cause of death for young man has not been released

Most Read