Local News Briefs

Barn owners face animal cruelty charges

Two rural Manitoba hog-barn operators are facing 23 charges of alleged animal cruelty following an RCMP investigation into their Notre-Dame-de-Loudres operation. Of 2,000 hogs found on the property, about 400 were dead or dying and 160 were later put down by the province’s chief vet, the Winnipeg Free Press reports. The Winnipeg Sun, however, reports about 2,000 hogs were rescued along with nearly 500 found dead and over 100 that were later destroyed. About a week after the investigation, the barn burned down in a suspicious fire, according to the Office of the Fire Commissioner. The charges include inadequate confinement and failure to provide adequate food, water and medical attention to the animals.

No access to red-light camera data

Data ownership prevents a local group from studying red-light camera tickets, Winnipeg Sun columnist Tom Brodbeck reports. WiseUp Winnipeg wants to analyze the percentage of red-light tickets given out just after four seconds to see if the amber light is too short. However, while the Winnipeg Police Service issues the tickets, private corporation ACS Public Sector Solutions owns the photos and timing data. As information access laws do not apply to private corporations, ACS has no legal obligation to release that information to WiseUp Winnipeg.
The group claims if when a car entered the intersection on an amber light was monitored, fewer tickets would be issued, which would result in lower profits.

Pirate Party candidate a first in Winnipeg North

Jeff Coleman, 25, is the first official face of the Pirate Party of Canada and is seeking election in the Winnipeg North by-election. The party focuses on consumers’ rights to share and copy multimedia for personal use and advocates against monitoring of Internet activities. Coleman is the movement’s first member to seek election outside of Europe. NDP Judy Wasylycia-Leis previously held the seat until she resigned to run for mayor. University of Winnipeg politics professor Shannon Sampert told The Canadian Press that small parties raise issues without electing anyone to Parliament, as the major political parties integrate certain policies to their own platform.

Lake names to honour Manitoban soldiers

Five lakes will take the names of five young Manitoban soldiers killed in Afghanistan, Premier Greg Selinger announced Nov. 4 at a ceremony at the legislature. Four of the soldiers’ families were honoured at the ceremony. Trooper Corey Hayes’s family was unable to attend, but the CBC reports a separate ceremony will be held at a later date. The lakes will be named after Pte Lane Watkins, Cpl James Arnal, Cpl Michael Seggie, Sapper Sean Greenfield and Hayes, who all died in the last three years. Arnal’s father said the fact NHL player Jonathan Toews had a lake named after him before his son did takes away from the honour’s significance, but he is grateful nonetheless.

Local aboriginal women appear on porn site

A U.S. pornographic site has surfaced featuring explicit sexual videos and images of Winnipeg aboriginal women. A blog post, written by a Florida-based man who operates the website, calls finding local native women to have sex with “easy.” A representative from Missing and Murdered Women in Manitoba told the CBC that the man is exploiting vulnerable women. The representative said one woman claims she was provided with alcohol and drugs before giving consent to be filmed in the man’s explicit videos. Winnipeg police said that while it is legal to post pornographic content of consenting adults, they would fully investigate if a formal complaint were filed.

Published in Volume 65, Number 11 of The Uniter (November 11, 2010)

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