Terrace woman critical of RCMP response after assault, injury

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Terrace woman critical of RCMP for delayed arrest
Warning: Disturbing content. A Terrace woman wonders whether a deliberate delay in the justice system is a case of racism. The woman has been left with serious injuries to her face following a bar fight and says it took too long for RCMP to make an arrest -- because the suspect is white. Aaron McArthur reports. – Dec 13, 2022

A Terrace woman is questioning whether race played a role in an investigation into an assault that left her with serious injuries to her face,

Madison McKay, who is First Nations, told Global News the RCMP took a long time to make an arrest in the case, which involves a white female suspect.

In a Zoom interview, the 20-year-old said what was supposed to be a regular night out with friends turned into a nightmare.

“Every time I look in a mirror it reminds me that this happened,” she said, referring to a deep cut above her eye.

McKay told Global News she stepped in during an argument between one of her friends and the friend’s coworker at the Northern Motor Inn.

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She said she was pushed by the other woman and pushed back, and was then smashed in the face with a glass mug.

“I pushed her back to get her away from me,” she said. “It was one swing, she grabbed it and broke it on my face.”

The emergency room team and a plastic surgeon stitched her wounds closed, and two-and-a-half weeks later they are healing. But McKay has serious concerns about how the Terrace RCMP handled the investigation.

“Two weeks I’ve been left traumatized and she was left walking the streets,” she said.

According to McKay it took the investigating officer six days before he followed up with her, while her alleged attacker was free to come and go as she pleased.

Finally, last Friday, the RCMP made an arrest.

“Terrace RCMP are continuing to investigate the incident and intend to forward the results of the investigation to BC Prosecution Services for consideration of charges,” the Terrace detachment said in a statement to Global News.

McKay believes racism may have played a role in the delayed response from police.

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“As a First Nations-Latina woman, I one-hundred per cent know I would have been in cuffs that same night,” she said.

The suspect has been arrested for assault causing bodily harm, but no charges have been approved and no court date has been set.

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