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Montréal, September 1, 2017 — An English-speaking Black man in his forties, who was arrested and handcuffed last March by two Montreal police officers for videotaping a police stop, has been once again pulled over by a Montreal police officer in another Driving While Black incident.

Last March, Kenrick McRae was intercepted by two Montreal police officers while waiting in his Mercedes while his female companion was at an ATM in Montreal West. He was told that he was pulled over because his plate lights were not working. He came out of his car with his video camera to record his car lights, which were in fact working. He was eventually arrested for “disturbance” and handcuffed by the officers who then proceeded to erase his recording.

Since going public with his case, McRae continues to experience questionable police interceptions. He believes that being a Black man driving a Mercedes Benz in Montreal has exposed him to regular and abusive police checks. For instance, in May, he parked his car on Victoria Ave. near Barclay, in the Cote des Neiges district, as he was getting a haircut. While inside the hair salon, he noticed two police officers inspecting his car, by walking around the vehicle, peering through the car windows and then taking notes of his license plate.

Last Friday, August 25, 2017, while driving his girlfriend to work in Lasalle, McRae was stopped by a police officer on Saint-Pierre St. near Notre Dame St. The officer told him that he did not see McRae's license plate and demanded to see his “transit” (temporary registration paper). The officer also asked him how long he had “owned the car.”

Since he did not know what a “transit” was, McRae asked the officer and understood what the officer meant. Surprised and then incensed at the officer’s assertion that McRae’s car had no license plate, he came out of the car and went to check his license plate, which was visible and firmly attached to the car. When pressed for answers, the officer became evasive, handed to Mr. McRae his papers and then drove off.

McRae immediately called 911 and related his encounter. He also asked for the officer’s name and badge number with the view to file a complaint.

“I’m simply fed up of being pulled over by Montreal’s police officers for bogus reasons. I’m tired of being stopped for Driving While Black. I’m asking Montreal Police Chief Philippe Pichet to tell Black people of this city why he allows his officers to continue to profile and harass Black drivers with impunity,” said McRae.

McRae credited his girlfriend with helping to prevent a turn for the worse in his dealing with the officer.

“If I were alone, I could have been arrested and even charged. This is how bad it has become. I encourage every Black driver in Montreal to adopt this slogan, “You profile, I sue”, he said.

Three days before the August 25 stop, he was pulled over by a Montreal police officer at an intersection, in NDG, for not stopping at the stoplights. The officer let him go without a fine. Also, last week, he settled a complaint against another Montreal Police officer for intercepting him for walking from the car to his house.

McRae has filed a police ethics complaint against the officer who stopped him on August 25. A civil rights complaint is also being considered.