Ronny Kay, a multi-faceted individual, was a cherished pillar of Montreal’s Chinese community. He was known for his business acumen, his occasional acting roles, and his warm presence in the neighbourhood. However, everything changed on September 17, 2022. Following an altercation with his girlfriend, a sense of distress shrouded him, eventually leading the local police to his doorstep. The confrontation ended tragically, in the middle of the very streets where he was held high, Kay was shot down.
A year on, the mystery of Kay’s shooting has not seen any significant breakthrough. The community, still grappling with the loss of a key member, is searching for answers. “An integral part of our community has been taken from us, we need to know why,” remarks May Chiu, a seasoned community activist known for her close relationship with Kay’s family post his death.
Police reports at the time indicated Kay’s unwillingness to let go of an item seemingly resembling a weapon. Pursuing the matter further, the case was handed over to Quebec’s police watchdog – the BEI, standard protocol for incidents resulting in death during police engagements. Yet, despite a year of the BEI’s involvement, the community feels largely left in the dark.
“Whatever it was that he was holding, it should’ve been found on his body by now,” implores Chiu.
Ronny Kay’s family, while maintaining a quiet grieving process, are advocating for transparency in the investigation for what they believe is a public inquest. “From the get-go, the family has demanded unbiased examination presented openly to the public, in particular, the family,” shares Chiu.
Protests arranged by Kay’s family have thus far been met by an unresponsive police force. “Not a shred of condolence or apology offered by the Montreal police,” they claim.
Simultaneously, Montreal’s Chinatown is struggling with an uptick in individuals battling mental health issues. The community reiterates that an increased police presence isn’t the solution. Chiu emphasizes the need for appropriating resources to social services, mental health services and addiction recovery support.
In light of the ongoing investigation, both the Montreal police and the BEI have chosen to abstain from commentary.