Winnipeg Free Press - ONLINE EDITION

Man who accused cop of assault charged with mischief after window broken

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A man whose allegations against a Winnipeg police officer made national headlines spent the weekend in custody after being accused of engaging in criminal mischief at a downtown apartment block.

Henry Lavallee, 50, made bail Monday morning after being arrested by Winnipeg police Friday in connection with a Feb. 17 incident at 411 Cumberland Ave. where a large window near the front entrance was was smashed.

He faces a charge of mischief under $5,000 and is presumed innocent. The Crown alleges Lavallee put his shoulder to the 10 foot by 3 foot window after on-site security asked him to leave and he refused.

Surveillance video of the early-morning event exists, court heard.

Lavallee denies being involved. "I don't know nothing even about it," Lavallee told Judge Dale Harvey during his brief bail hearing.

Prosecutors opposed setting Lavallee free. He has a significant criminal history including 30 convictions for breaching court orders since 2000, Crown attorney Mandy Klein told court.

Lavallee is no stranger to police or the courts.

His police misconduct complaint after being arrested in November 2008 led to an officer being charged with aggravated assault and put through a trial. Const. Ryan Law also faced the prospect his policing career would be over.

Lavallee alleged Law had kicked him in the stomach as he lay on the floor of a Public Safety Building holding cell.

Hours after his arrest he was rushed to hospital from the Winnipeg Remand Centre to undergo emergency surgery for an abdominal injury.

Law was acquitted in February. Justice Joan McKelvey found reasonable doubt existed that he assaulted Lavallee.

The officer took the stand in his own defence and denied any wrongdoing.

Law's defence lawyers painted Lavallee as a "pathological liar" who lied in his testimony more than 20 times.

McKelvey found she had "no difficulty" believing Law's denials. "Henry Lavallee's testimony was in many areas difficult to accept and not credible in nature," McKelvey said.

A lawsuit Lavallee has filed against the City of Winnipeg and individual officers remains before the courts.

james.turner@freepress.mb.ca

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