Trial of man shot by regional police in pursuit enters final stretch
KITCHENER -- The trial of Joshua Hannaford is nearing its end.
The 31-year-old man is accused of breaking into a Flamborough home as well as stealing a van and guns in March 2018 when he was shot by Waterloo Regional Police in pursuit.
Final crown witnesses took to the stand in the courtroom on Monday. This included officers who were called to the scene as well as Hannaford himself.
Hannaford admitted to stealing the van from a rural property a week before the incident. He says on the day he was shot he was trying to get home to his girlfriend and daughter.
Hannford maintains that he never broke into the home and had no guns with him when he was shot.
He described leaving a dead end road, seeing a police blockade, and reversing the vehicle because he didn't want to be arrested.
The court heard that Hannaford drove the van into a field, got stuck in the mud, ran through a wooded area, and heard an officer moments after he cleared the bush.
"He was agressive," Hannaford told the judge. "His face was deep red and contorting. He looked like a wild animal to me."
He added that he yelled 'I just want to go home' before he tried to turn and run.
"I experienced a bullet go past my head," said Hannaford. "There was another bullet that went by my elbow. I remember being hit and my legs giving out. As I'm falling I continue to hear gunshots."
Hannaford says he has undergone multiple surgeries and is still unable to walk after being shot in his right leg.
The judge heard from Sgt. Richard Dorling of the WRPS last week. He is the officer who shot Hannaford in the leg and was charged by the SIU with attempted murder in late 2018.
The court had previously heard that a knife was found near Hannaford when he was arrest. He told the judge he had never seen the knife before.
OPP Cnst. Brandon Bedard took to the stand earlier Monday and told the judge he was the first officer to arrive on scene moments after Hannaford was shot.
Court heard that several police, including from Hamilton, were dispatched to the area of Hwy. 401 and Homer Watson Boulevard for a suspect with a stolen van, rifles, and ammunition.
Bedard says he heard an officer over the radio say, “show me your hands” before hearing three to four successive gunshots moments later.
The provincial officer recounted arriving on scene and running across six lanes of the highway to help a regional officer with a suspect in the ditch area. He noted that the suspect was shot in the leg and handcuffed.
Cnst. Chris O’Neill of WRPS testified that he read Hannaford is rights and told him he was under arrested after he was placed in an ambulance.
He adds that he accompanied Hannaford when he was airlifted to Hamilton General Hospital.
The crown will cross examine Hannaford on Tuesday.