Fearing Police Violence, Black Man Seeks Asylum in Canada

By Sameer Rao Oct 29, 2015

Fear of being killed by police has lead one African-American man to seek protection from our neighbors to the north. 

According to CBC News, Kyle Lydell Canty argued his case in front of Canada’s Immigration and Refugee Board (IRB) last week, citing personal evidence, endemic police violence and the deaths of both Michael Brown and Eric Garner during the hearing.

A New York native, Canty lived in six other states (in each of which he reported police harassment) before entering Canada last month. He currently resides in a Vancouver homeless shelter while his case is being heard. During his IRB hearing, Canty presented extensive documentation, including an edited video of several interactions with police. In one of these interactions, he was arrested in Salem, Oregon, for tresspassing when he claimed to be talking on the phone and using free Wi-Fi in a bus station.

Although Canty faces several outstanding charges in the U.S.—including jaywalking, resisting arrest, threats and disorderly conduct—he claims that he fears for his life, saying, "I already know the outcome."

If his request for asylum is granted, Canty can apply for permanent residency. If not, he plans to appeal the case.