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Simmonds grills Smyth at Dunphy inquiry

Lawyer Bob Simmonds grills RNC Const. Joe Smyth at the Dunphy Inquiry.
Lawyer Bob Simmonds grills RNC Const. Joe Smyth at the Dunphy Inquiry.

RNC Const. Joe Smyth acknowledged he had “nothing concrete” to believe that Donald Dunphy was a threat to then-premier Paul Davis.

Smyth was grilled by lawyer Bob Simmonds towards the end of the morning at the Dunphy inquiry.

Simmonds began a combative cross-examination by focusing on Smyth’s training, and his evaluation of Dunphy’s Twitter postings.

In April 2015, Smyth was assigned to the protective services unit providing protection for Davis.

Smyth said that Dunphy pointed a rifle at him, and so he shot and killed Dunphy in self defence.

He has said that he visited Dunphy because he was assessing a potential threat based on Twitter postings, but also that none of the offending tweets were specifically expressing a direct threat against Davis.

But in cross examination, Smyth acknowledged that his review of Dunphy’s tweets was very quick, and that nothing posted indicated a specific threat of violence towards the politicians Smyth was protecting.

Emails from several people he spoke to, though, indicate they thought Smyth was investigating threats from Dunphy.

Simmonds’ style of questioning was at times combative and theatrical, waving around sheets of paper and interrupting Smyth to press a particular point.

Simmonds is representing Meghan Dunphy, the daughter of Donald Dunphy.

The cross-examination is scheduled to continue this afternoon.

This is Smyth’s fourth day of testimony at the inquiry.

Up until now, he’s been taking questions from inquiry lawyer Sandra Chaytor, who has gone over the lead up, the shooting itself, and the aftermath in painstaking detail.

In the morning, she asked Smyth questions about his conduct while the police investigation was underway. Smyth talked about sleepless nights and frustration that the police refused to speak publicly and explain the circumstances surrounding the shooting.

Smyth felt that he was being harassed and intimidated by people online as a consequence of the shooting, and that his career as a police officer stalled because he was under investigation.

Now each of the other parties with official standing at the inquiry have a chance to ask questions.

The inquiry proceedings are live streamed online at CIDDD.ca

jmcleod@tehtelegram.com

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