Content Warning: videos of police brutality
In 2017, Dalia Kafi was arrested by Cst. Alex Dunn for breaching curfew. While at the Arrest Processing Unit, Alex Dunn attempted to remove Dalia’s head scarf while she stood handcuffed against the wall. As Dalia pulled her head back, Alex Dunn grabbed her arms (again, Dalia was handcuffed) and threw her face-first into the concrete floor. Dalia Kafi was knocked unconscious, suffered a broken nose (which required surgery), and needed stitches for a split lip. Dalia’s family expressed that she was never the same after this incident. In 2021, days before Alex Dunn’s sentencing, Dalia Kafi passed away from a suspected drug poisoning. She leaves behind a young son, who is now in the care of Dalia’s family.
Alex Dunn was found guilty of assault causing bodily harm. He was handed a 30-day sentence; 15 days to be spent at home and 15 days to be spent on curfew. Alex Dunn was also investigated for a photo of him in Blackface at a Halloween party in 2012. Around the time of the Blackface photo, Alex Dunn was also charged with three Police Act offences: guilty in 2016 to two charges of insubordination for breaching CPS policies related to accessing a civilian's information for personal reasons and the home storage of his service firearm. For the two incidents, Alex Dunn was docked four days' pay.
In 2021, after learning of Alex Dunn’s sentencing and reoccurring legal matters, and after consultation with Dalia’s family, myself and 2 other Black women committed ourselves to daily protests outside of the Calgary Courts Centre demanding the firing of Cst. Alex Dunn.
9 hour days for 14 days.
We shared literature, provided mutual aid supplies, and played music to keep us going. We were attacked every day - from slurs being yelled and objects thrown at us from cars, to being physically assaulted by both citizens and police officers.
On our 13th day, myself and another person were attacked by an off-duty sheriff and violently arrested. I was held in a knee-neck restraint which led to me having a fist-sized area of hair ripped from the back of my head. Elena Cunningham, the off-duty sheriff, has not been charged, despite her stealing my phone, punching and kicking me, and using my phone as a weapon moments later on the other person who was arrested and charged with me - who had their charges dropped not long after.
I was detained for 8 hours and given 7 criminal charges which spanned over the entire time period we were setup outside of the courts centre. In March of 2023, I faced a 3-day trial for these charges. 4 of 7 charges were dropped, while I face sentencing for the remaining 3 charges in December: one count of assault with a weapon (megaphone), and two counts of mischief under $5000. Currently, the Crown has asked for 90 days jail time, to be served intermittently, followed by 12-18 months of probation. This is a much harsher sentence than what Alex Dunn served for his assault on Dalia Kafi.
Today, November 23rd 2023, 6 years after his violent assault on Dalia Kafi, Alex Dunn has officially been fired from the Calgary Police Service. Something is seriously wrong when it takes 6 years to fire a "public servant" who was convicted of causing bodily harm to a citizen. Not only that but, he had been convicted on other matters during that time as well. This is a common occurrence: repeat offending cops. If you somehow haven't watched the Above the Law documentary yet, it goes into great detail on this subject.
I'm feeling many emotions from this news today, and none of them are great. None of this process has brought justice. Not to Dalia, not to Dalia’s family, and not to the communities effected. It’s been 6 years since the assault took place, and only now is Alex Dunn being terminated. During this time, he has remained an employee of the Calgary Police Service while also taking on new positions such as fighting forest fires over the summer. Alex Dunn gets to continue his life, following his interests and passions, with a pension worth more than most of us will ever see in our lifetimes, while those most effected continue to be impacted by his actions and those of the institution(s) that protects people like him. This isn't justice. If anything, this is a move made by the Calgary Police in an attempt to gain some sliver of respect back after their recent actions at the last rally for Palestine where they attacked children and pregnant women, as well as recently falsely charging children for murder. All of this is a game to them, as if they don't have the highest power over our lives.
Dalia Kafi was a Mother, sister, daughter, niece, cousin, friend. She was a woman who had hopes and dreams. Dalia deserved better than this. Dalia deserved to live a full life. Black people deserve to live their full lives.
Rest peacefully, Dalia. #BlackLivesStillMatter
You can still donate to the GoFundMe set up by Dalia's family: https://gofund.me/4eb050bb And you can support my ongoing legal battles through the various calls-to-action set up by the Stop the Stack YYC campaign: https://linktr.ee/stopthestackyyc
"Taylor McNallie dedicates her time to seeking racial justice and collective liberation through education and hands-on work with both marginalized communities and allies alike. As the co-creator of Inclusive Canada, she provides education on anti-racism, white supremacy, and anti-Blackness. She is also a member of the Walls Down Collective which provides access to no-barrier resources and care such as Harm Reduction, free food programs and an alternative to local policing."
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