Prominent anti-restriction activist Chris “Sky” Saccoccia has taken to Twitter to thank local Mounties for their minimal presence at his Stuart Park rally, saying the only officers who showed up were supportive of his cause. The Kelowna RCMP, however, denies Saccocia’s claims.
The increasingly popular figure who touts the idea of “united non-compliance” spoke to a crowd of a couple of hundred supporters on Thursday evening (April 22), inciting them to violate provincial health orders.
Following the rally, Saccoccia posted a photo of him shaking hands with an officer and a video praising local law enforcement for their support.
“They weren’t wearing masks,” he said of two officers on bikes who approached him before the rally began. “And you know what they said? They said, ‘We’re here to make sure you’re all safe and to help you fight for our freedoms.’ That’s the Kelowna police.”
Cpl. Jocelyn Noseworthy of the Kelowna RCMP said the detachment is aware of the claims Saccoccia is making but said officers’ interactions with Saccoccia during the rally came only in reminding the protest organizers of the laws and order pertaining to their protest.
“The Kelowna RCMP is an impartial entity, and does not support any event that is in violation of the law, or public health orders, and we strongly discourage any actions that potentially put our community at risk. Our officers were present to ensure the safety of the public and the protestors, and to prevent confrontations,” said Cpl. Jocelyn Noseworthy in an email to the Capital News.
The handshake photo, according to Noseworthy, was taken before the protest in another location.
“We can confirm he was wearing his mask during this interaction,” she said.
Noseworthy added the officers who were at the protest wore masks and followed health orders.
Saccoccia’s Kelowna appearance is one of many on his cross-country “Freedom Convoy.” Saskatchewan Premier Scott Moe condemned the rallies and said Saccoccia is not welcome in the province.
In recent months, Saccoccia has managed to get himself charged for breaking the Quarantine Act, banned from Instagram and placed on the no-fly list, all the while making a name for himself among anti-restriction crowds across the nation.
The Canadian Anti-Hate Network has revealed past comments Saccoccia made denying the holocaust and some that tout anti-Semitic, anti-Black, homophobic and Islamophobic rhetoric.
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