Crime & Punishment

Crime and justice comment and analysis

Successful campaign, but bitter feeling lingers

with 8 comments

Two weeks ago we started a GoFundMe campaign for Cindy Millington to help her through a tough time while her husband, RCMP Cst. Kwesi Millington, was serving his 30 month sentence after being convicted in a trumped-up charge of perjury.

After running for a week, we had surpassed the target goal of $10,000 and moved the goal to $12,000. Well, that too got passed. I spoke with Cindy and she was overcome with gratitude. We decided to let the campaign run through the long weekend then close it with a big thank you to all of you who supported Cindy. We then started the withdrawal process.

I then left for a pre-planned week in the desert playing golf with some of my retired former VPD friends. When I arrived at our hotel, I received a message from the GoFundMe Community Management Team saying, “It has come to our attention that your campaign may not be compliant with our Terms & Conditions.” They then proceeded to tell me the campaign was suspended pending a response from me.

I promptly responded explaining the situation and said the money was being raised for Cindy to help with the household bills and mortgage payments while her husband was unable to earn money and her salary alone would not cover everything. In the interim, I began getting messages from folks who were trying to donate but the site had been taken down and they were asking why.

I subsequently got this reply from GoFundMe: “Unfortunately, it has come to our attention that your campaign is in violation of the following line from our terms: “the defense or support of anyone alleged to be involved in criminal activity.”

Criminal activity? I was stunned.

What followed was a back and forth to ensure Cindy would be able to collect the donated funds and I’m pleased to say that Cindy has now received an EFT in the amount of $14,136.24.

When Cindy told Kwesi of the campaign he was very moved. Cindy said, “I told him how you created the campaign and it’s been flooded with donations. When I told him we were at $10,000 he said, OMG, I’m gonna cry, that’s amazing.”

While alls well that ends well, I suppose. But I’m still miffed at GoFundMe for the account suspension citing “the defence or support of criminal activity.” This was anything but. Kwesi Millington got steam-rolled by a system looking for scapegoats for political purposes and an employer that stood mute and did not come to the defence of the YVR Four.

Clearly by using the phrase “It has come to our attention…” indicates they got a complaint. Who would complain over this type of campaign? I don’t know. Maybe an anti-police type?Perhaps someone who doesn’t like inter-racial couples? A seniour member of the RCMP who did not agree with my criticism of the Force in this? Who knows?

But, what I do know is the policing community and those who support police came together and supported Cindy and the campaign for the week it ran and I guarantee you not one of those who donated in any way, shape or form defend or support criminal activity. It’s a nonsensical position taken by GoFundMe but at least they allowed Cindy to collect the donated funds, less their commissions of course.

I will stay in touch with Cindy and try and update you on how Kwesi and Monty Robinson are doing as I get updates. Again, thank you to all who supported this campaign. Your generosity is truly humbling and appreciated.

Leo Knight

@primetimecrime

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Written by Leo Knight

November 21, 2017 at 6:35 pm

8 Responses

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  1. Leo – Please keep us informed of any developments on this. I hope that both Kwesi & his wife are able to find the strength to get through this. If they require more help, let us know. Hope Kwesi is doing ok on the inside while the legal charade continues.

    Anon

    November 22, 2017 at 3:50 am

    • Leo , thanks for the update. The important thing is Cindy got some help.

      Derek Cheng

      November 22, 2017 at 2:21 pm

  2. Odd,

    Criminal activity is criminal activity…..Gofundme has rules….. You’d be pissed if they were raising cash for defence lawyers for accused……

    I guess cops get pouty when the rules don’t go their way. Don’t all of you trip on your lips….

    One interesting thing I will point out though….. The two white officers got off, the two of colour were the only ones convicted. I don’t buy into the fact it’s unfair that folks of colour are overrepresented in jail in the USA and Canada, I think there is usually good reason for it.

    That said…. it is an interesting point that deserves mention….

    Kwesi didn’t seem like he was around long enough to be a bad apple…. or have much of a pattern of bad behaviour.

    The other one, Robinson was clearly a bad apple…. between killing the motorcyclist and YVR, glad he’s done.

    Someone is dead, four officers were responsible to various extents, there was a coverup…. Now police are less tazer crazy then they were then, and more aware of in custody deaths, and now some cops that were responsible less than transparent are finally seeing the inside of a razor wire fence.

    This isn’t completely a bad thing. It’s too bad someone died to have to hopefully get some changes.

    Ken

    November 24, 2017 at 11:34 pm

    • You end to educate yourself some more. You know nothing of what you speak. In the first instance, the motorcyclist was doing 96 KMH and his bike was in fifth gear when he drove into Robinson’s car as he was turning into the street he lived on. On a cul-de-sac.

      In the second place the forensic video analysis done by Grant Fredericks who instructs at Quantico clearly showed the four officers were telling the truth.

      Best keep one’s mouth shut and be thought a fool than to open it and remove all doubt.

      Leo Knight

      November 25, 2017 at 1:21 am

      • Right…..

        The first instance- the de facto hit and run and evidence of intoxication cover up is more the issue. Sneaking home to get in a few liqour shots and returning to the scene…that’s really bad behavior, criminal actually… and from a police officer…..

        Plus the bad driving turning across the path of a speeding motorcyclist (he does have additional driver training, he is supposed to better than average)…. I bet he even spouts in traffic court that he can and does consistently estimate speeds of speeding vehicles to within a km of the radar/ laser reading. He should know enough to recognize a speeding m/c but I’ll give him the benefit of an honest mistake by getting IFO the bike.

        In the second, the part cops don’t get is the entirety of the situation. Four cops on a (relatively) harmless confused agitated individual. When they went in without honest attempts at deescalation and ultimately killed him the public was rightly outraged. The police alone made that action worse…. things were quite boring until they arrived and made it much much worse.

        The public saw what could happen to them or a loved one in a crisis.

        Regardless of how the Quantico expert explained justification for brutal police behavior, the public is smart enough to realize there is a better way. We expect better of our police officers than what we PAYED for that night at YVR.

        Thankfully the bystander had the courage to take a video and catch as much of the engagement as he did.

        Thankfully he SUED to get his evidence back so it was not suppressed by the RCMP investigation.

        Thankfully we didn’t have to rely on the inevitable police justification and cover up.

        We do pay your wages as taxpayers, we are all stakeholders in the actions of police, either at a personal interaction level, or financially.

        As I mentioned above, you are getting better. This incident and the recording improved policing in Canada. The fact that Joe Public has a video maker in their pocket is the single thing that has made police more responsive to the public’s concerns.

        Why the police push so hard against wearing body cameras I don’t know.

        I enjoy your column. You do show the good lots of police do, Thanks for your efforts in writing and maintaining it.

        Ken

        November 25, 2017 at 2:53 am

  3. Across the path of a speeding motorcycle? Are you serious? Monty was turning into his street and he was hit by a guy on a motorcycle going like a rocket. He had his kids in the car and took them away from a horrible incident that they witnessed. He left his DL with a witness and said he’d be right back.And he was. At home he fired a couple of shots down his throat to calm himself. He’s an admitted alcoholic who has sought treatment and has been clean for several years. He paid a price for his indiscretion. And now he is in jail for a crime he did not commit. You may revel in that but you are wrong on so many levels. Do us all a favour and piss off. Again, you know not of what you speak.

    Leo Knight

    November 25, 2017 at 5:13 am

    • I don’t want to make any excuses for Monty’s contribution to the accident that resulted in the death of the motorcycle driver, but do you have any information as to whether there is any information about the possible impairment of the motorcycle driver?

      A long time ago I downloaded a copy of a Coroner’s Report from the CBC.CA site which states that “…Toxicological analysis of the motorcycle driver revealed a blood alcohol level in excess of the legal limit for operating a motor vehicle…”. This same Coroner’s Report also stated that “…A police investigation identified evidence to suggest that alcohol intoxication on the part of the driver of the Jeep was a factor in the collision…”.

      The reason I ask if you know of any such information pertaining to the possible impairment level of the motor cycle driver is that, although the Coroner’s Report came from the CBC.ca site, I don’t know if this Coroner’s Report is legit. Other than this one occasion, I have never ever seen this information about the motor cycle driver anywhere else in the public media. This same Coroner’s Report goes on to refer to the speeds of the two vehicles.

      Fritz

      November 27, 2017 at 3:50 am

  4. The motorcyclist was over twice the legal limit. Please read this: https://leoknight.wordpress.com/2015/03/

    Leo Knight

    November 27, 2017 at 5:09 am


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