Mar 28, 2013

By Jane Brown

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The man who killed Toronto Police Sergeant Ryan Russell with a snowplow will remain in custody for a disposition hearing before the Ontario Review Board.  It is all but certain Richard Kachkar will be locked up in a secure hospital for treatment of his mental health.  A jury has found Kachkar not criminally responsible for killing the much loved 35 year old sergeant.  His case will be reviewed annually, and he could be released if the ORB determines he is no danger to the public.

Sgt Russell’s widow, Christine, says she will do her best to ensure Kachkar stays locked up.  “My family, most likely myself, will have to fight this for the rest of my life.  This will be on a yearly basis, so there is no such thing as closure, there is no such thing as telling my son that your Dad died but the man who did this will never hurt you.”

Defence lawyer Bob Richardson says Richard Kachkar feels terrible about Russell’s death.  He says his psychotic client still doesn’t understand why or how it happened.  Richardson says it was difficult for the family to hear, but justice has been done.  “A man who was very mentally ill at the time and didn’t know what he was doing caused someone’s death and everybody feels bad about that.  But that’s why we have provisions in the criminal code so that people who are mentally disturbed, we don’t punish them or treat them the way we do other people.”

Both Crown and Defence had agreed Kachkar drove through the Toronto city core, smashing into cars, shattering the glass doors of a Maserati dealership and hitting Russell with the snowplow on Avenue Road early on a snowy January 12, 2011.

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