In a viral video, a 78-year-old great-grandfather was arrested and handcuffed by Ottawa police on Monday after he gave the trucker a thumbs up and a honk.
Gerry Charlebois was arrested for honking his horn in support of a protesting trucker. The policeman named ‘Jones’ argued that honking a horn “is an offense.”
The old man and great-grandfather suffered cuts and bruises on his arms and hands, shoulder, and knee from the arrest.
One man who witnessed the incident confronted the policeman.
“Yes, I know you’re abusing the old man. It’s called communism. You [old man] don’t have to show anything [driver’s license]. You didn’t do anything wrong. You have the right to freedom of choice. You have the right to beep your Horn or whatever,” the good samaritan said. “Why are you doing this?” he asked the police.
The police responded, “because it is an offense, I have written down that it is. It’s actually an offense.”
The man then accused the police of being a sheep to the Canadian government.
“So you’re standing with your lying government. Do you know that your superior is a liar and he went on the media lying to the Canadian people, now you’re too,” the good samaritan argued.
Gerry Charlebois told the Toronto Sun in an interview that he “meant no harm”. “I just gave the trucker a thumbs up and a honk,” he added.
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He was not charged criminally but given a $118 bylaw ticket for “unnecessary noise.” But he did receive a physical takedown he won’t soon forget.
“I’m so sore,” said the father of four children, grandfather of 11, and great-grandfather of four. “It hurts so much.”
The cuts and bruises on his arms and hands, shoulder and knee are evident. A shade of black and blue is more evident Tuesday, say his family.
Video footage of Monday’s disturbing arrest, and agitators yelling at police during the incident, is being shared around the world.
Charlebois, who is double vaccinated and planning to get his booster shot, said he was “confused” during the incident at the corner of Besserer and Friel Sts., about four blocks from the main protest. “I was in shock,” said Charlebois. “When (the police) pulled me over, he told me I was in trouble for honking the horn.”