On the morning of Friday, May 7, around hundred attended a rally held outside 25 Grosvenor St. in downtown Toronto. The occasion: the Ontario Coroner’s autopsy being performed on the body of police-murdered Junior Alexander Manon – beaten to death two days prior on the evening of May 5.
From 9:00am onwards, family, friends, and throngs of supporters outraged by the police terror rallied to make statements to the press and to the crowd.
While the rather clueless reporters from the Toronto Star, CityNews and Global News continued to pose their deluded questions about Junior’s “collapse”, members of the Manon family and other community activists spoke out against Junior’s violent death at the hands of Toronto Police Services.
Struggling to hold back his tears, Junior’s father Alejandro Manon told reporters: “I’m here looking for justice because they killed my son, they killed my son like an animal… It was a crime what they did, and it’s justice that I want. I feel destroyed on the inside, he was my son, he was my child… We would like the police to stop being so brutal – the police are supposed to protect, not to kill. There’s ways of making an arrest that don’t involve killing – they didn’t have to kill him.”
Family friend and a long-time resident and community organizer in the Jane-Finch area Chakanda Gondwe, also a lead organizer with the African People’s Socialist Party delivered a powerful message to the crowd, situating Junior’s violent killing within the broader strategy of police containment of African-descended working class peoples in their communities. Gondwe spoke to the widespread nature of the terror being inflicted on African working-class people across Toronto and North America.
Also speaking to the rally outside the Coroner’s Court was Kabir Joshi-Vijayan from the Justice for Alwy campaign, which was created back in 2007 in response to the police murder of 18-year-old Alwy Al-Nadhir: “This organizing is not something that’s going to end here – it’s going to be happening up at Finch where Junior was living, it’s going to continue at the site of the murder, it’s going to be happening everywhere that police are pursuing violence and terrorism against the community.”
A candlelight vigil has been organized for tonight, Friday, May 7 at Founders Road and , the site of Junior Manon’s murder.