Man with ties to Waterloo Region fatally shot by police
Published Saturday, February 2, 2019 3:32PM EST
Last Updated Monday, February 4, 2019 2:17PM EST
A man killed by police outside an Ottawa mall Thursday has been identified as 30-year-old Greg Ritchie.
Ritchie was a member of the Saugeen First Nation but lived for some time in Waterloo Region.
On Thursday, Ottawa Police received a call around 8 a.m. about an armed man at a mall on St. Laurent Boulevard.
They said there was an altercation and Ritchie was shot by one of the officers.
He was later pronounced dead in hospital.
One of the officers was also taken to a hospital where they were treated and released.
Ritchie's family told CTV he was never known to be a violent man, and describes him as a kind and generous friend.
Chantel Ritchie, the sister-in-law of Greg Ritchie, wrote on her Facebook page: “I wish he could come home… but thank you so much everyone for your kind words… every word and prayer is giving us strength.”
On Saturday a Spirit Walk was held in Ottawa to honour Ritchie’s life.
Held outside the Ottawa Police station, indigenous leaders said they want this shooting to be catalyst for change.
“This is nothing new. It’s new for the white people. But this is nothing new for us.”
Participants had some strong words about the issues facing the indigenous community.
“It’s OK. We’re brown, they’re white. One less dead Anishinaabe is better for them and good for us,” said Don Eagle. “When does it stop? When does it stop?”
On the Spirit Walk’s Facebook page it said: “We are calling on the Ottawa Police Service to ensure the officers involved answer justly for what they have done. We call on the community to put pressure on the institutions that allow injustices like this to happen so frequently. We call on all allies to join in solidarity.”
Ritchie was known to have mental health issues.
Organizers say this also has to be addressed.
“Indigenous people, especially those with mental health issues, are killed at extraordinary rates in comparison to any other group across Turtle Island. We demand change. We demand justice now.”
The SIU is now investigating the circumstances leading up to the shooting.