The Canadian Press Staff
MONTREAL — A dispute broke out in Sherbrooke between the mayor and a municipal councillor who raised the idea of transforming the former Hells Angels hideout in the Lennoxville borough into a crime interpretation centre.
Sherbrooke Mayor Steve Lussier has often voiced his desire to have the Wellington Street bunker destroyed, as the building was the site of serious crimes. In March of 1985, five members of the Hells Angels from another chapter who had been victims of an ambush were executed.
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But Councillor Évelyne Beaudin thinks the wooded area that surrounds the bunker has enormous potential to become a beautiful public space, and when it comes to the bunker itself, she suggests avoiding hasty decisions.
Beaudin brought up the idea of transforming the building into a museum of crime, saying that destroying a symbol of crime is not the same thing as ending it. She thinks what was once a source of fear can become something positive.
Beaudin criticized Lussier for not wanting to discuss the topic or to consult the public to see what they prefer.
Lussier said that the end of the bunker saga – which was confirmed last month by the Supreme Court of Canada – is an opportunity to turn the page on the dark history in Sherbrooke. He said they can find other things to do with the space and that Sherbrooke will be able to recover more than $72,000 in unpaid taxes.
In an interview with La Tribune, Lussier added that as long as he is mayor, a crime museum project will never see the light of day. He expects the building to be destroyed quickly.
The building was seized during the SharQc operation carried out by the police in April 2009. Its confiscation was confirmed at the end of April 2020 by the Supreme Court of Canada.
Of all the bunkers that the biker group owned in Quebec, the one in Lennoxville is the only one that has not yet been destroyed.
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