B.C. suspect in autistic man’s beating once hid 23 fentanyl bags in an uncomfortable place
WARNING: Disturbing details, reader discretion is advised.
Ronjot Singh Dhami, the man whose last known address was in Surrey B.C., and who’s the subject of a Canada-wide warrant in connection with the beating of an autistic man in Ontario, has a detailed criminal past that includes assault with a weapon and traffic violations.
He was also once charged on a three-count indictment for possessing fentanyl, heroin and cocaine for the purposes of trafficking — substances he hid in his rectum.
He was later acquitted of those charges.
Dhami, 25, is wanted by Peel Regional Police after what they called a “vicious assault” on an autistic man at the Square One bus terminal in Mississauga, Ont. on March 13.
Surveillance video released in connection with the assault showed a 29-year-old autistic man on roller blades sitting on a set of steps before three suspects come down the stairs and beat him.
The three men can be seen punching and kicking the man before they walk away.
A search of B.C. court records shows numerous counts involving Dhami on the West Coast.
Dhami was convicted for assault with a weapon in 2011. He also has traffic violations dating to between 2012 and 2014.
They included driving without reasonable consideration, failing to produce a driver’s licence or insurance, violating a restriction on a driver’s licence, having unauthorized tinted windows and failing to obviously display a relevant new driver sign.
Then, in 2016, he was the subject of a voir dire that was associated with a three-count indictment for possession for the purpose of trafficking fentanyl, heroin and cocaine.
The voir dire was held as Dhami sought an order that “evidence of the drugs that he excreted from his body be excluded from the trial of the charges against him.”
That hearing stemmed from an arrest in Kelowna in June 10, 2014. At that time, an RCMP officer stopped a Mercedes after the driver had failed to signal a lane change and a right turn.
Dhami was in the passenger seat when the RCMP officer first discovered a marijuana joint lying next to him.
The pair were arrested for marijuana possession — and that’s when the Mountie noticed a “pea-sized glob of white cream-like lotion” on Dhami’s jaw. He had also noticed that Dhami was “vigorously” rubbing his hands together during their encounter.
He found a jar of white lotion behind the driver’s seat, as well as globs of creamy lotion on CD cases and interior fabric inside the glove box.
At this point, remembering another arrest involving a different person, the officer suspected that Dhami had put drugs up his rectum.
Dhami was taken into custody RCMP custody in order to “secure the evidence of the drugs” that the officer “believed Mr. Dhami had hidden up his bottom.”
Dhami was placed in a cell where the toilet bowl was dry and the water supply was cut off.
At 8 p.m. that night, Dhami “fumbled around in the area of his buttocks,” then sat on the toilet “while concealing his right hand from view.”
Dhami then stood up, put his hand down the back of his pants once more and “fished around with it in the area of his buttocks.”
Dhami then informed the guards he had a bowel movement, and no drugs were found in his feces.
Police were convinced that he had taken the drugs out of his rectum, held the drugs while he sat on the toilet and then put them back up his rectum.
Dhami told an RCMP officer that he should be released because no drugs had been found in his feces.
Then, the following day, Dhami was seen crouched on the floor of his cell at about 1 p.m.
He was using a plastic utensil to poke small packages through the holes of a floor drain when police “interrupted this activity.”
Dhami was found with feces and small plastic-wrapped packages smeared on his feet. Feces and more feces-smeared plastic-wrapped packages were found in and around the toilet and on the cell floor.
Police also found more packages in the water below the floor drain.
They ultimately found 23 bags containing 4.59 grams of fentanyl, 23 bags containing 5.86 grams of crack cocaine and seven bags containing 1.24 grams of heroin.
“There is no doubt that Mr. Dhami expelled these packages from his rectum sometime shortly before 1300 hours on June 11, 2014,” wrote B.C. Supreme Court Justice Peter Rogers.
The judge ultimately found that Dhami’s arrest for heroin possession was now lawful, and that a subsequent hearing should take place to determine whether the evidence that was recovered from Dhami should be excluded from his trial.
Dhami was acquitted on all there counts in January 2017.
On Wednesday, police named a second suspect, 21-year-old Parmvir Singh Chahil, in connection with the beating.
He, too, has as rap sheet. It includes charges of uttering threats and possessing a weapon for a dangerous purpose, dating back to 2015.
The third suspect hasn’t been identified, though he’s believed to go by the first name “Jason.” Police believe he could be from B.C., too.
A lawyer representing Dhami said his client is not guilty of the attack, and that he will turn himself into police, though he maintains his innocence.
- With files from Simon Little, Rumina Daya and The Canadian Press
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