Adam Skelly’s court case regarding challenges of violations of Covid-19 lockdown restrictions has been thrown out.
The thirty-three-year-old owner of Adamson BBQ restaurant in Ebiticoke, Ontario, has been fighting closure regulations since the fall of 2020. Skelly challenged the provincial government’s restrictions in the now-dismissed court case.
In November, the popular restaurant was ordered to close by Toronto Public Health. The following day, Skelly opened his doors to diners, denying the lockdown rules. The rebellious grilling resulted in a three-day showdown between police and the establishment. Skelly was arrested amid a crowd of protesters and supporters.
Skelly faced charges of obstructing police, mischief, trespassing and hosting an illegal gathering inside and outside the restaurant. The small business proprietor’s supporters launched a Go Fund Me campaign, raising over $300,000 for his legal battles. The page called for justice in the unfairness against small businesses facing closures while big-box stores could stay open and prompted the hashtag #IStandWithAdam on social media.
Premier Ford stated: “My heart breaks for these guys, and it's not fair. But please, in saying all that, you've got to follow the protocols and the guidelines. That's what it comes down to."
Skelly appeared in Ontario Superior Court early this week for a constitutional challenge against the province. Supporters of the anti-lockdown sect in Ontario placed the restauranteur in a position of a living martyr after disobeying emergency orders. The challenge was meant to touch on the injustice of business closures, Covid-19 testing, WHO merits, mask obligations, and other controversial pandemic topics. The Notice of Constitutional Question read, “The restrictions put in place by governments to impose draconian measures on its citizens without a scientific or medical rationale constitutes an abuse of human rights and a crime against humanity.”
Hundreds of people joined the virtual hearing, causing technical issues with the Zoom call. The judge tossed the case due to problems with paperwork handed in by Skelly’s counsel. The Ontario Superior Court Justice stated: "I regret to say I do not think I have the jurisdiction to proceed to deal with these issues on the merits today... I do not think the proceeding has been constituted in such a way to give me that jurisdiction.”
Skelly later collected his thoughts on his blog, writing: "If a Superior Court justice doesn't have the jurisdiction to hear a constitutional challenge, who does? Our entire legal challenge was dismissed in Superior Court. We have 11 expert reports, none of which were challenged by the government. We have nine questions of constitutional law, only 2 of which were countered by the government. Yet, not a single thing was heard today. ‘No jurisdiction,’ said the judge. This is the first time a Notice of Constitutional Question served and filed months in advance with a huge evidentiary record was refused to be heard in a Superior Court in Canadian history. The rule of law has been cancelled, once again."
Skelly and his legal team plan to continue their fight, stating that the issue is “far from over” looking for a court appeal in the coming months.