By TOM GODFREY
A North York mother says the door of her Driftwood Court apartment was allegedly smashed by Toronto Police officers in a search for drugs in which guns were pointed at her girlfriend and seven-year-old son.
An irate Salomie Bahadur, 38, alleged the traumatic incident occurred on March 8 around 9 p.m. as her family were asleep in bed. She was at work at the time.
Bahadur claims officers from 31 Division smashed the door of her 11th floor unit and entered with their weapons drawn and screaming that they were police.
“My seven-year-old son had a gun pointed at his head,” Bahadur told Share. “He is still traumatized and still cannot eat or sleep.”
She said her partner is also having nightmares and a hard time coping after the terrible ordeal.
“She is still terrified and afraid of police,” said Bahadur. “She still can’t sleep at night because all she can see is police with guns.”
She said the officers had a warrant to search her unit and showed photos of her apartment that had a busted door. There were also clothing and furniture strewn all over, which she said was a result of the search.
The family did not want to release photos of themselves, fearing further police repercussions.
Bahadur, who is originally from Guyana, professed that she is a law-abiding citizen with no criminal record or ties to gangs or drugs.
“I work six days a week and work is all I do,” she said. “I don’t have much friends and we keep to ourselves.”
Bahadur recalled arriving home after work to find the door broken with a couch placed against it on the inside to prevent it from opening.
“I have been living in the Jane and Finch area for many years and this is the first time something like this has happened to me,” she told Share. “The police didn’t care that there was a child in there when they busted in with guns drawn.”
She had planned to travel to 31 Division with a family member to file a complaint against police in regards to her treatment.
“We are totally mad and frustrated and this issue is not going to go away,” Bahadur warned. “We don’t use drugs and don’t have anything to do with gangs.”
She said officers told her family that they were searching for marijuana.
Bahadur has been living in the unit for about a year with no issues.
“The people around here are nice,” she said. “I work six days a week and I don’t mess around with gangs or drugs.”
She believes that police raided the wrong apartment and is seeking an apology.
Officers at 31 Division said they were “not aware” of the incident and that any complaint filed against police will be fully investigated.
That same night other buildings in the area were the target of a similar police operation.
Heavily-armed officers stormed a high-rise on Chalkfarm Ave., in which several people were rounded up for allegedly being part of a large-scale human trafficking probe.
Witnesses said dozens of officers in tactical gear and carrying automatic weapons jumped out of a series of rental trucks just after 5 a.m. and entered three separate apartment buildings in the Jane and Wilson area.
Police deployed flash-bang grenades that awoke residents and were seen leading suspects away in handcuffs.
Jane and Finch residents have long complained that they are being targeted by 31 Division officers, who have been accused of racially profiling and carding young Black males.
Residents of the area, in a Community Satisfaction Survey, said their relationship with police is so bad that they refuse to report crimes.