Skip to main content
The Globe and Mail
Support Quality Journalism
The Globe and Mail
First Access to Latest
Investment News
Collection of curated
e-books and guides
Inform your decisions via
Globe Investor Tools
Just$1.99
per week
for first 24 weeks

Enjoy unlimited digital access
Enjoy Unlimited Digital Access
Get full access to globeandmail.com
Just $1.99 per week for the first 24 weeks
Just $1.99 per week for the first 24 weeks
var select={root:".js-sub-pencil",control:".js-sub-pencil-control",open:"o-sub-pencil--open",closed:"o-sub-pencil--closed"},dom={},allowExpand=!0;function pencilInit(o){var e=arguments.length>1&&void 0!==arguments[1]&&arguments[1];select.root=o,dom.root=document.querySelector(select.root),dom.root&&(dom.control=document.querySelector(select.control),dom.control.addEventListener("click",onToggleClicked),setPanelState(e),window.addEventListener("scroll",onWindowScroll),dom.root.removeAttribute("hidden"))}function isPanelOpen(){return dom.root.classList.contains(select.open)}function setPanelState(o){dom.root.classList[o?"add":"remove"](select.open),dom.root.classList[o?"remove":"add"](select.closed),dom.control.setAttribute("aria-expanded",o)}function onToggleClicked(){var l=!isPanelOpen();setPanelState(l)}function onWindowScroll(){window.requestAnimationFrame(function() {var l=isPanelOpen(),n=0===(document.body.scrollTop||document.documentElement.scrollTop);n||l||!allowExpand?n&&l&&(allowExpand=!0,setPanelState(!1)):(allowExpand=!1,setPanelState(!0))});}pencilInit(".js-sub-pencil",!1); // via darwin-bg var slideIndex = 0; carousel(); function carousel() { var i; var x = document.getElementsByClassName("subs_valueprop"); for (i = 0; i < x.length; i++) { x[i].style.display = "none"; } slideIndex++; if (slideIndex> x.length) { slideIndex = 1; } x[slideIndex - 1].style.display = "block"; setTimeout(carousel, 2500); }

A couple pays their respects at a roadside memorial in Portapique, N.S., on April 22, 2020.

Andrew Vaughan/The Canadian Press

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau won’t commit to a federal inquiry into the recent Nova Scotia shootings, even as the province’s Premier continues to say it’s up to Ottawa to take the lead in examining the tragedy.

Nova Scotia Premier Stephen McNeil said this month he would not initiate a public inquiry into the shooting rampage that claimed 22 lives last month, saying the province is waiting to see what the federal government decides.

Mr. McNeil told reporters the province “will wait to see” what Ottawa commits to beyond the continuing RCMP investigation. He has said he believes the key areas of jurisdiction – such as the procedures used by the Mounties – are federal.

Story continues below advertisement

However, speaking to reporters Friday in Ottawa, Mr. Trudeau said the RCMP is still working on the case, and the federal government will work with Nova Scotia on what to do next. He sidestepped a question on whether his government will launch an inquiry federally.

More than a month after one man went on a shooting rampage in Nova Scotia and killed 22 people, the province is waiting for word on whether the federal government will call a public inquiry into warnings about the gunman and how he continued his attacks for hours. The Canadian Press

“People have many questions about what happened in Nova Scotia, and we are encouraging the RCMP to do its work on the initial investigation, but as we move forward there will be of course larger questions to ask, and we will work with the government of Nova Scotia on getting those answers,” Mr. Trudeau said.

Family members of victims and legal experts have repeatedly called for more information on the police handling of the rampage, which lasted more than 12 hours.

There have also been questions raised about how the RCMP informed the public of the shootings as they unfolded over five locations. The perpetrator’s prior history of domestic violence has also been raised as a key issue to examine.

The Mounties provided a timeline of the rampage indicating that it began in Portapique, N.S., on April 18 after a domestic assault incident where the gunman detained and abused his common-law wife. Police have said she managed to escape into nearby woods where she hid until early in the morning of April 19.

Last week, a former neighbour of the gunman said she reported an account of a 2013 incident of domestic violence by the shooter against the common-law spouse to the RCMP in Truro. Brenda Forbes said she reported witnesses telling her the perpetrator had strangled and beaten his partner, and she said she told police there were guns in the house.

The RCMP said in an e-mail Friday it is still looking for the police record of the incident and declined further comment.

Story continues below advertisement

Ed Ratushny, the author of The Conduct of Public Inquiries, said in an interview that he firmly believes a public inquiry should be called and that it could be a joint federal-provincial effort. He said such an inquiry will be necessary to get to the bottom of what led to the mass shooting.

The University of Ottawa professor emeritus of law said there are overlapping issues of provincial and federal jurisdiction.

He gave the example of the issue of domestic abuse, noting that the way support is provided to abuse victims is largely a provincial responsibility, while changes to relevant Criminal Code offences to prevent abuse would be a federal matter.

“I think there’s much more room for provincial and federal governments for getting their acts together on inquiries, because the problems don’t happen in silos. They’re often very interrelated,” he said.

“If they want to get to bottom of it, just get together and get a really good commissioner who has the trust of the public,” he said.

With files from Jordan Press in Ottawa.

Story continues below advertisement

Our Morning Update and Evening Update newsletters are written by Globe editors, giving you a concise summary of the day’s most important headlines. Sign up today.

Report an error
Due to technical reasons, we have temporarily removed commenting from our articles. We hope to have this fixed soon. Thank you for your patience. If you are looking to give feedback on our new site, please send it along to feedback@globeandmail.com. If you want to write a letter to the editor, please forward to letters@globeandmail.com.

Welcome to The Globe and Mail’s comment community. This is a space where subscribers can engage with each other and Globe staff. Non-subscribers can read and sort comments but will not be able to engage with them in any way. Click here to subscribe.

If you would like to write a letter to the editor, please forward it to letters@globeandmail.com. Readers can also interact with The Globe on Facebook and Twitter .

Welcome to The Globe and Mail’s comment community. This is a space where subscribers can engage with each other and Globe staff. Non-subscribers can read and sort comments but will not be able to engage with them in any way. Click here to subscribe.

If you would like to write a letter to the editor, please forward it to letters@globeandmail.com. Readers can also interact with The Globe on Facebook and Twitter .

Welcome to The Globe and Mail’s comment community. This is a space where subscribers can engage with each other and Globe staff.

We aim to create a safe and valuable space for discussion and debate. That means:

  • Treat others as you wish to be treated
  • Criticize ideas, not people
  • Stay on topic
  • Avoid the use of toxic and offensive language
  • Flag bad behaviour

Comments that violate our community guidelines will be removed.

Read our community guidelines here

Discussion loading ...

To view this site properly, enable cookies in your browser. Read our privacy policy to learn more.
How to enable cookies