TORONTO - His widow Christine wept gently while her husband's calm, professional voice filled the courtroom.
It sounded so banal, so innocuous -- a police radio call about a stolen snowplow involved in a number of collisions around Avenue Rd. and Davenport.
Sgt. Ryan Russell answered the call that snowy morning two years ago, as he did so many others in his distinguished 11-year career. Who would ever imagine that after spending so much time in the dangerous world of guns and gangs, it would be this seemingly routine call that would cost him his young life?
The senselessness of it all had his family sobbing as his last exchange with the police radio room was played for the jury Tuesday. A dispatcher is telling Russell to be on the lookout for a stolen white Dodge 3500 pickup with a plow on the front that had been involved in a number of "fail to remain" accidents.
"I'm in the area of Bloor and Avenue. Nothing yet," Russell tells the dispatcher.
Alone in scout car 52S2, he then spots the truck heading north and turns on his emergency roof lights, triggering the dashboard video.