A twice criminally convicted Toronto police officer has been ordered to resign or be fired following a pattern of “egregious” misconduct, including pepper spraying a handcuffed man in the back of a police cruiser and causing a car crash after driving drunk.
But in spite of the rare dismissal at the Toronto police disciplinary tribunal, Const. Matthew Brewer remains on the payroll — suspended with pay from Toronto police after appealing the sentence. The appeal process puts his termination on hold and is likely to prolong his case for months or more.
In a written decision, Toronto police Supt. Riyaz Hussein ordered Brewer to resign within seven days or be fired after finding the officer’s multiple incidents of misconduct — including a November 2019 impaired driving conviction — “individually and collectively egregious.”
“PC Brewer’s actions were so egregious that they raise insurmountable doubts about his future suitability as a police officer,” Hussein wrote in the July 29 ruling.
David Butt, Brewer’s lawyer, said he could not comment on his client’s dismissal while it is being appealed to the Ontario Civilian Police Commission on the grounds that Hussein “misapplied the legal test for dismissal.”
During the disciplinary hearing, Butt argued his client suffered from post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) but had taken steps to address a substance abuse disorder and had been sober since May 2019.
Hussein’s decision to dismiss Brewer comes more than a year after the officer, hired in 2002, pleaded guilty to four counts of professional misconduct stemming from separate incidents spanning three years. Brewer has been suspended with pay since May 2019.