Former Ottawa police boss defends intelligence reading of ‘Freedom Convoy’

Ottawa’s former police chief is defending his reading of intelligence on the protest convoy that descended on the national capital last winter.

Peter Sloly is testifying today at a public inquiry into the federal government’s use of the Emergencies Act to clear “Freedom Convoy” protesters in heavy trucks who blocked the streets around Parliament Hill for weeks, as well as several border crossings.

Sloly resigned the day after the act was invoked in mid-February amid widespread criticism of his handling of the Ottawa protest.

The former chief told the commission he was reading intelligence reports Ontario Provincial Police were providing and had been receiving briefings from his deputies.

Sloly says based on what he was reading and being told, he believed the “Freedom Convoy” would largely be a weekend event, with some protesters setting up a “tent city” afterwards.

The former chief says there wasn’t just one “Freedom Convoy,” but multiple ones that descended on the city, and he questioned why he wasn’t receiving intelligence from federal agencies on what was coming.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Oct. 28, 2022.

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