Did Toronto Nightclub Bouncers Cross the Line?
Photo: Barry Ward's injuries, allegedly sustained from being beaten by bouncers of Kool Haus (via Facebook)
"The first thing i saw when i was thrown onto the sidewalk was 2 other bouncers throw Michelle (a 130lb. woman for those who do not know her) down to the sidewalk, and KICK HER IN THE HEAD REPEATEDLY!!! Obviously, Barry and I tried to defend her with our lives, but were outnumbered 10 bouncers to the two of us. After a futile attempt at defending eachother [sic], we were both head stomped into unconsciousness. When i was revived, i saw Michelle, lying in a pool of blood pouring from her right ear." ~ Kevin Turlo
A Toronto Facebook group called "Boycott The Guvernment Nightclub!!!" has recently been home to some heated internet debate. The group description outlines club patron Kevin Tulo's account of what happened on the night of September 19th at the Guvernment/Kool Haus club complex. The victim alleges that he and a couple of friends inadvertently entered a restricted area of the club, were found by club security staff, and were then systematically taken out of the club by force and excessively and violently beaten.
Photo: Michelle Emond's injuries, allegedly sustained from being beaten by bouncers of Kool Haus (via Facebook)
Other members in the group have voiced alternative versions of the story (via wall posts), claiming that the three clubbers intentionally entered the clearly delineated, restricted area and began to steal alcohol when they were caught, resisted, and attacked security staff.
Regardless of the cause of the intervention by the nightclub's bouncers, the incident leaves me wondering where the line should be drawn. Ontario's Private Security and Investigative Services Act grants bouncers the legal right to use "reasonable force" to remove unruly patrons, but in this instance a woman allegedly sustained some serious injuries in the altercation (including "a broken ear drum, shattered bones in her right ear, a broken clavical [sic], and multiple bruises and cuts").
If this case goes to court, it'll be interesting to see how the story unfolds.
In the meantime, I'll continue to behave myself and do my best to avoid trouble when I go out to Toronto bars.
a blogTO reader who identied himself as "Joe" pointed us to images from a separate, unrelated incident allegedly involving bouncers working at Kool Haus. Here is an image his sister's boyfriend, Brendan Wallace, after the alleged encounter during a concert (image source):
Again, I can't quite understand why a patron should get this beaten up.
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