Mass Murder, Police Mayhem

The Mass Casualty Commission: The Facts, The Findings, and What Must Be Done

by Dean Beeby

A layperson’s guide to the report that explains how the senseless tragedy in Portapique happened, and how we can prevent such violence in the future.

In this book Dean Beeby distills the extensive research of the Mass Casualty Commission into a readable account of exactly what happened during 13 chaotic hours when 22 Nova Scotians were murdered in April 2020. 

The commission tracked the perpetrator’s movements and pieced together the actions of all involved RCMP members. The Mounties’ fatal errors – failing to believe citizens reporting that the murderer was driving a replica RCMP car and failing to recognize his back road escape route among many others – are documented in the report and set out in this book.

Dean Beeby describes the background to these events, including the numerous times the killer was involved with police and their repeated failures to deal with the danger he represented to his community and the public.

The Commission made 130 recommendations for action, two-thirds of them dealing with the RCMP. Dean Beeby offers a plain language description of each of these recommendations, enabling readers to keep track of how the RCMP and other agencies respond to the commission’s demands for major reforms.

The Mass Casualty Commission’s exhaustive investigation cost almost $50 million, and yielded a massive final report. The report was published in seven volumes of 3,000 pages in total. This book is intended to give readers access to the key content of this important public record.

About the Author

Dean Beeby

DEAN BEEBY is an investigative journalist and author. Born in Halifax, he was Atlantic bureau chief for The Canadian Press news agency before his transfer to Ottawa,where he later worked in the Parliamentary bureau of the CBC. An expert in the use of freedom of information laws, he has authored several books, including one about the RCMP. His investigative journalism has also frequently focused on the RCMP.

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