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London Riot

Police ID accused in St. Paddy's Day riot

Scott Taylor, Multimedia Journalist
Ottawa Sun

By Scott Taylor, Stratford Beacon Herald

LONDON, ONT. - 

More arrests are expected after 15 people were charged Wednesday, mostly with minor offences, in the London riot that tore up a neighbourhood near Fanshawe College.

Police publicly identified 12 of the 15 suspects, the only three not named are all minors whose identities are protected.

Most of the charges are for minor mischief and liquor offences, but police were still looking for more video -- including from the media -- to help identify other suspects in the 1,000-strong St. Patrick's Day mob that tangled with police, torched a TV news vehicle and damaged all 21 cruisers called in to quell the melee.

Every one of the roughly 50 officers who worked the riot was attacked. But so far only one accused, Blaine Mills, 21, is charged with assaulting police -- in that case, with two counts of assault with a weapon.

A CTV news truck was overturned and set on fire, but no arson charges had yet been laid from the late-night, booze-fuelled riot that made international headlines.

London police Const. Dennis Rivest said the investigation is still far from over.

"There's a lot of investigation that needs to take place. People need to understand that it takes time to do an investigation. I mean, people want the answers right now, but it takes time to get those answers," Rivest said. "We've only arrested 15 people out of about 1,000.

"Have we got the real troublemakers? Not necessarily. But maybe we do. You have to allow time for the investigation to work its way through all of the evidence that been presented."

Rivest said there are still people police are trying to identify and locate.

"I do expect further charges in the future," he said.

The names of suspects responsible for $100,000 in costs to city taxpayers have been widely anticipated, both on the street and on social media sites.

A Facebook page, Fleming Riots St. Pat's Day 2012, was built for the sole purpose of outing those who took part in the hours-long mayhem that also left fences torn down and the streets littered with hundreds of broken bottles.

Some members posting on that page Wednesday expressed disappointment most of the charges were minor. But others preached patience, noting arrests were still being made a year after the Vancouver riots.

Police publicized dedicated phone and e-mail sources for the public to use to help them track the worst of the worst and have said they've had many tips as a result.

Fanshawe College president Howard Rundle recently said eight students have been suspended, pending further investigation. College expulsions could result.

Rundle was unavailable for comment Wednesday.

Others charged:

Jacob Biggelar, 19, is charged with being a member of an unlawful assembly

Jordan DeRose, 18, is charged with being a member of an unlawful assembly

Peter Donohoe, 19, is charged with being a member of an unlawful assembly

Michael King, 19, is charged with being a member of an unlawful assembly

Kory Puklicz, 19, is charged with being a member of an unlawful assembly

Brian Garton, 25, is charged with obstruction of police

Stephania Smieja-Henry, 20, is charged with obstruction of police and resisting arrest

Michael Moore, 20, is charged with being a member of an unlawful assembly and mischief under $5,000

Ryan McMahon, 24, is charged with being a member of an unlawful assembly mischief under $5,000

Police also said two 15-year-olds were charged with offences including being members of an unlawful assembly and assault of police with a weapon, but cannot be named as they are young offenders.

scott.taylor@sunmedia.ca

Twitter.com/ScottatLFPress


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