12-year-old handcuffed by Montreal police says he 'felt terrified,' father plans to sue

·4 min read
Ammaar Kashif, 12, right, was asked by his father,  Kashif Inayat, to roll up a car's window during a wedding celebration on May 9. Things went down hill from there, they say. (CBC - image credit)
Ammaar Kashif, 12, right, was asked by his father, Kashif Inayat, to roll up a car's window during a wedding celebration on May 9. Things went down hill from there, they say. (CBC - image credit)

When Ammaar Kashif's father asked him to hop in an exotic car, flip on the ignition and roll up the window during his uncle's wedding in Montreal, he didn't have to be asked twice.

But about 30 seconds after he turned the car on, a police cruiser, light bar ablaze, flew onto the scene. Kashif's arm was twisted behind his back, he was handcuffed and then locked in the rear of the officer's car.

Kashif is only 12 years old. He said the officer didn't tell him what was going on.

"It hurt," he said. "I felt terrified. And the handcuffs really hurt my hands."

The incident occurred on May 9 at around 8:30 p.m., and Kashif said his dreams of one day becoming a police officer were dashed that day. Now he hates them, he said, and the incident "still terrifies me."

The boy's father, Kashif Inayat, said he is going to sue.

Recounting the story, emotion crept into Inayat's voice. He said his family was dressed in traditional Pakistani attire for the wedding.

To spice things up, they had rented a couple of Lamborghinis and an Audi R8 for the event, Inayat said.

The cars were parked in front of the reception hall, and the family was posing for photos when "I noticed one of the car's windows was down. So I asked my son to take the keys and put the window up."

Inayat said that's when a police officer rolled up, hopped out of his cruiser and told the family, about 25 people, to stay back, Inayat said.

Submitted by Kashif Inayat
Submitted by Kashif Inayat

The officer approached the vehicle, and the concerned father tried to intervene.

The officer told him there had been complaints of somebody doing doughnuts and driving recklessly, Inayat recounted.

"I told him, 'Sir, he's my son. He's 12 years old, and I can identify him on my behalf,'" he said.

"He doesn't listen. He twists my son's arm, puts him in handcuffs, calls for reinforcements and brings my son to his car."

In a video captured of the arrest, a baby can be heard crying as Kashif, silent and compliant, is cuffed and led to the cruiser.

Pleading with officer to release boy

The boy was placed in the cruiser's backseat, still restrained. Kashif said he was asked his name and date of birth.

Inayat said he pleaded with the officer, explaining to him that his son is too young to drive and doesn't even know how. Other family members got involved, trying to reason with the officer, he said.

"But I could see in his eyes that he doesn't want to listen," Inayat said. "He is ignoring everything that is being said."

WATCH | Montreal police officer handcuffs 12-year-old: 

Other officers showed up and asked for identification, but Inayat was unable to easily produce it because he had no pockets in his traditional attire. His wallet was in his wife's purse, he told police, but he could get it.

The incident dragged on and on, while his son was alone in the car, Inayat said.

Finally, he was allowed to sit with his son in the cruiser, and after some time, Inayat said the arresting officer made an effort to explain what happened. The officer said he too was a father, he was responding to a complaint and mistakes happen, Inayat said.

The officer offered to visit the family's home the next day and formally apologize, Inayat said. He offered to have the boy visit the police station as well to try to make up for the incident and help him understand what happened, he said.

But Inayat said he refused the offers, saying instead he will get his lawyer involved.

Montreal police spokesperson Const. Gabriella Youakim said police won't comment on the interaction because Inayat is threatening legal action.


However, she did say there was a 911 call at around 8:20 p.m. on May 9 about car engines being revved in that parking lot. She said the caller reported someone was driving recklessly and doing stunts.

Both Inayat and his son said nobody was revving engines or driving recklessly in the parking lot that night.

Feels like racial profiling, father says

Inayat said it feels like a case of racial profiling. The officer approached the traditionally dressed Pakistani family with hatred in his eyes, Inayat said.

"His eyes were popping out," he said. "Nobody wants this to happen to their son."

Inayat's son, Kashif, said the wedding party continued after the police left, but it was not nearly as fun because nobody was happy.

Inayat would like to see the officer involved disciplined, and for all police to be better trained, he said.

"I felt my son was bullied by the police officer."

He said he will sue because he was raised to fight against wrongs, and he raises his own children the same way.

"Stand for your rights," he said.

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