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First witness to be called at trial of Toronto cop charged in teen's shooting

TORONTO — Crown prosecutors are expected to call their first witness today at the trial of a Toronto police officer charged in the shooting death of a teen on an empty streetcar.

Const. James Forcillo has pleaded not guilty to second-degree murder and attempted murder in the death of 18-year-old Sammy Yatim.

Yatim's death in July 2013 was captured on surveillance and cellphone videos and triggered public outrage.

Crown prosecutors have said they plan to prove that Forcillo's actions in the incident were neither necessary nor reasonable.

Forcillo's lawyer has said he will be arguing that the officer's actions were justified and carried out in self-defence.

The jury that will decide the case has been told that an autopsy found Yatim had consumed the drug ecstasy before he boarded the streetcar where he died.

Jurors have also heard that Yatim pulled out a switchblade knife while on the streetcar, triggering panic among passengers who rushed off the vehicle, but no one was injured.

The Canadian Press

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