Police arrest man who allegedly vandalized cenotaph at Old City Hall

Toronto police say they have arrested a man who allegedly vandalized the cenotaph at Old City Hall the day after Remembrance Day.

The 33-year-old man from Toronto has been charged with mischief under $5,000 and common nuisance.

He is scheduled to appear in court later this morning.

Officers were initially called to the cenotaph, at Bay Street and Queen Street West, in the early morning of Nov. 12. Passersby reported that it had been spray painted with the words “ye broke faith with us” in capital letters.

Fewer than 24 hours earlier, the city held its annual Remembrance Day service at the monument, which honours Canada’s war dead.

It’s possible the message referenced the well-known John McCrae poem In Flanders Fields.

“If ye break faith with us who die, we shall not sleep, though poppies grow in Flanders fields,” the poem reads.

Speaking to reporters that day, Mayor John Tory called the act “disgraceful” and “unacceptable,” especially because of the timing of the incident.

“There’s never any excuse for this kind of vandalism,” he said.


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