SIU Director’s Report - Case # 21-OVI-038
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Mandate of the SIU
Under the SIU Act, the Director of the SIU must determine based on the evidence gathered in an investigation whether there are reasonable grounds to believe that a criminal offence was committed. If such grounds exist, the Director has the authority to lay a criminal charge against the official. Alternatively, in cases where no reasonable grounds exist, the Director cannot lay charges. Where no charges are laid, a report of the investigation is prepared and released publicly, except in the case of reports dealing with allegations of sexual assault, in which case the SIU Director may consult with the affected person and exercise a discretion to not publicly release the report having regard to the affected person’s privacy interests.
Special Investigations Unit Act, 2019Pursuant to section 34, certain information may not be included in this report. This information may include, but is not limited to, the following:
- The name of, and any information identifying, a subject official, witness official, civilian witness or affected person.
- Information that may result in the identity of a person who reported that they were sexually assaulted being revealed in connection with the sexual assault.
- Information that, in the opinion of the SIU Director, could lead to a risk of serious harm to a person.
- Information that discloses investigative techniques or procedures.
- Information, the release of which is prohibited or restricted by law.
- Information in which a person’s privacy interest in not having the information published clearly outweighs the public interest in having the information published.
Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy ActPursuant to section14 (i.e., law enforcement), certain information may not be included in this report. This information may include, but is not limited to, the following:
- Confidential investigative techniques and procedures used by law enforcement agencies; and
- Information that could reasonably be expected to interfere with a law enforcement matter or an investigation undertaken with a view to a law enforcement proceeding.
Pursuant to section 21 (i.e., personal privacy), protected personal information is not included in this report. This information may include, but is not limited to, the following:
- The names of persons, including civilian witnesses, and subject and witness officials;
- Location information;
- Witness statements and evidence gathered in the course of the investigation provided to the SIU in confidence; and
- Other identifiers which are likely to reveal personal information about individuals involved in the investigation.
Personal Health Information Protection Act, 2004Pursuant to this legislation, any information related to the personal health of identifiable individuals is not included.
Other proceedings, processes, and investigations
Information may also have been excluded from this report because its release could undermine the integrity of other proceedings involving the same incident, such as criminal proceedings, coroner’s inquests, other public proceedings and/or other law enforcement investigations.
A person sustains a “serious injury” for purposes of the SIU’s jurisdiction if they: sustain an injury as a result of which they are admitted to hospital; suffer a fracture to the skull, or to a limb, rib or vertebra; suffer burns to a significant proportion of their body; lose any portion of their body; or, as a result of an injury, experience a loss of vision or hearing.
In addition, a “serious injury” means any other injury sustained by a person that is likely to interfere with the person’s health or comfort and is not transient or trifling in nature.
This report relates to the SIU’s investigation into serious injuries sustained by a 39-year-old man (the “Complainant”).
Notification of the SIUOn February 4, 2021, at 12:10 a.m., the Peel Regional Police (PRP) notified the SIU of the Complainant’s injuries.
The PRP advised that on Wednesday, February 3, 2021, at 9:41 p.m., PRP were responding to a motor vehicle collision at Chinguacousy Road north of Major William Sharpe Drive. A responding officer, the subject official (SO), struck a pedestrian, the Complainant, with his police cruiser. The Complainant was transported to the Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre (SBHSC) and diagnosed with serious injuries.
The TeamDate and time team dispatched: 02/04/2021 at 1:09 a.m.
Date and time SIU arrived on scene: 02/04/2021 at 4:30 a.m.
Number of SIU Investigators assigned: 4
Number of SIU Forensic Investigators assigned: 2
Number of SIU Collision Reconstructionists assigned: 1
Affected Person (aka “Complainant”):39-year-old male interviewed, medical records obtained and reviewed
The Complainant was interviewed on February 5, 2021.
Civilian WitnessesCW #1 Interviewed
CW #2 Interviewed
CW #3 Interviewed
CW #4 Interviewed
The CWs were interviewed between February 5, 2021, and February 22, 2021.
Subject OfficialsSO Interviewed, but declined to submit notes, as is the subject official’s legal right.
The SO was interviewed on February 18, 2021.
Witness OfficialsWO #1 Interviewed
WO #2 Interviewed
WO #3 Interviewed
The WOs were interviewed between February 4, 2021, and February 25, 2021.
Service Employee WitnessesSEW Interviewed
The SEW was interviewed on February 24, 2021.
The Scene On February 4, 2021, at 2:45 a.m., SIU Forensic Identification Service investigators and Collision Reconstructionist attended the area of Chinguacousy Road and Major William Sharpe Drive, Brampton.
The scene was located on the northbound lanes of Chinguacousy Road north of Major William Sharpe Drive.
FIS investigators learned that the SIU investigation was interconnected with a separate collision investigation to be completed by the PRP. Agreements were made to allow PRP to attend and complete this part of the investigation.
Chinguacousy Road was in a north/south direction. The roadway was divided into six lanes with a centre median. The investigation of the collision was located entirely in the northbound lanes. The northbound roadway was straight and slightly ascending at the area of the collision site. Pavement surface and markings were in good condition. There were streetlights present in the area. There were three vehicles within the confines of the guarded area.
The SO’s police cruiser was parked in the northbound curb lane. There was minor collision damage to the driver’s side front corner and the driver’s door mirror. There were no tire marks present that could be related to this vehicle.
Figure 2 - The SO's cruiser with minor collision damage to the front driver's side.
The other two vehicles were in the centre northbound lane and appeared to have been involved in a collision. A Ford Escape with backend damage and a grey Ford Escape with frontend damage. Collision damage to vehicles in the centre lane was unrelated to the damage found on the police cruiser.
Figure 3 - The Complainant's Ford Escape.
Figure 4 - CW #1's Ford Escape.
Directly behind the vehicles, in the centre northbound lane, was a large area of debris consisting of wood furniture products. Also, within this area was evidence of Emergency Medical Service (EMS) medical waste.
The scene was photographed and mapped. The collision reconstruction was completed.
Global Positioning System (GPS) Data – the SO’s cruiserThe GPS data captured from the SO’s police cruiser on February 3, 2021, had 16 seconds missing around the time of the collision between the SO’s cruiser and the Complainant.
At 9:40:16 p.m., the SO’s police cruiser was heading north on Chinguacousy Road at Major William Sharpe Drive at 32 km/h;
Between 9:40:17 p.m. and 9:40:32 p.m., there were no GPS data captured;
At 9:40:33 p.m., the SO’s cruiser was heading north on Chinguacousy Road between Major William Sharpe Drive and Williams Parkway; and
At 9:40:33 p.m., the SO’s cruiser was on Chinguacousy Road traveling at 68 km/h.
Expert Evidence Reconstructionist Findings
On February 3, 2021, at 9:41 p.m., the SO was driving a marked 2018 Dodge Charger northbound in the centre lane of Chinguacousy Road north of Major William Sharpe Drive. The GPS of his cruiser malfunctioned at that point. The posted speed limit on Chinguacousy Road was 70 km/h. It was clear and the roads were dry.
The Complainant, after having been involved in a motor vehicle collision involving his Ford Escape with another Ford Escape, stood on the south side of the Ford Escape in the centre northbound lane of Chinguacousy Road while wearing dark blue pants and a light green zip-up jacket. He was waving his arms in an effort to alert the attention of northbound motorists. The SO approached the Complainant and swerved to the right in an effort to avoid colliding with him.
At an unknown precise location, the Complainant was struck by the left front fender of the PRP unit and he was thrown to the pavement coming to rest somewhere close to some blankets located in the centre northbound lane just south of the uninvolved Ford Escapes. About six metres north of the blankets, the GPS of the PRP unit functioned properly again indicating a speed of 69 km/h. The SO brought his police cruiser to a stop about 25 metres north of the blankets.
The impact speed of the PRP unit could not be calculated.
Video/Audio/Photographic Evidence 
At 9:40:39 p.m., the SO advised that he had been in an accident on Chinguacousy Road, south of Williams Parkway. He requested an ambulance and a sergeant attend.
At 9:41:26 p.m., a sergeant asked where the accident was, and he was advised by the dispatcher that it was south of Williams Parkway and north of Major William Sharpe Drive.
At 9:42:37 p.m., the SO requested the ambulance again, and he advised that another unit was in the area and to check if they are available. The sergeant advised he would be there in ten seconds. The SO advised that he was fine.
At 9:49:09 p.m., a female operator from the PRP called the ambulance service. She requested an ambulance attend at Chinguacousy Road south of Williams Parkway, for a “departmental”, and that an officer was involved.
At 9:42:56 p.m., the Duty Inspector called the communication centre and asked who was injured. The call taker said that the SO was injured in an accident and that two sergeants were attending.
Materials Obtained from Police Service The SIU obtained the following records from the PRP between February 4, 2021, to February 22. 2021:
- Motor Vehicle Collision Report;
- Notes of the WOs;
- Communications Audio Report - Phone;
- Communications Audio Report - Radio;
- PRP Collision Report;
- PRP Event Chronology;
- PRP GPS Data;
- PRP Mobile Device Unit Messages;
- PRP Occurrence - Vehicle seizure;
- PRP Policy - Operation of Police Vehicles;
- PRP Unit History; and
- PRP Vehicle - GPS Logs.
Materials Obtained from Other SourcesThe SIU obtained and reviewed the following records from the following other sources:
- SBHSC - Medical Records for the Complainant.
In the evening of February 3, 2021, the Complainant was traveling north on Chinguacousy Road, approaching Williams Parkway, when his SUV was struck from behind. He had been rear-ended by another SUV, this one driven by CW #1. Both SUVs came to a stop in the centre lane of the road, separated by a distance of several metres. The Complainant and CW #1 exited their vehicles and checked on each other’s wellbeing.
At about the same time, the SO was traveling north on Chinguacousy Road south of the collision site. He noticed debris on the road in the area of the stopped vehicles and was taking note to avoid objects on the road when his cruiser struck the Complainant. The Complainant came to rest in the middle lane behind his stopped SUV.
A paramedic that was traveling in the area stopped to render assistance. In time, additional paramedics arrived at the scene. The Complainant was taken to hospital and diagnosed with multiple fractures.
Section 320.13, Criminal Code – Dangerous operation of motor vehicles, vessels and aircraft
Analysis and Director's Decision
The offence that arises for consideration is dangerous driving causing bodily harm contrary to section 320.13(2) of the Criminal Code. The offence is premised, in part, on conduct that amounts to a marked departure from a reasonable level of care in the circumstances. In the instant case, the issue is whether there was a want of care in the manner in which the SO operated his cruiser that caused or contributed to the collision and/or was sufficiently derelict as to attract criminal sanction. In my view, there was not.
Whatever the SO’s shortcomings as he approached the accident scene and struck the Complainant, I am satisfied that they fall short of transgressing the limits of care prescribed by the criminal law. The officer was traveling from one scene to another in the course of conducting a theft investigation when he came upon the scene of an accident. He noticed the two SUVs stopped ahead, and a field of debris left in their wake, and surmised that the vehicles had been in an accident. It was his intention to drive through the scene and radio for other officers to attend, as he was engaged in other police business. There is no question of excessive speed on the part of the SO. As far as can be surmised from the available data, it appears the officer was driving in and around the 70 km/h speed limit as he struck the Complainant. Why it is that the SO failed to see the Complainant on the roadway until it was too late, swerving to his right at the last second and sideswiping the Complainant in the process with his driver’s side, is unclear; the area was well-lit by artificial lighting and the Complainant had been waving his hands trying to get his attention. It may be that the SO was distracted as he tried to maneuver around debris on the roadway. Be that as it may, I am unable to reasonably conclude on the evidence that any indiscretions on the part of the SO in the manner in which he operated his cruiser amounted to anything more than a momentary loss of attention, let alone a marked deviation from a reasonable level of care.
In the result, as I am satisfied for the foregoing reasons that there are no reasonable grounds to move forward with criminal charges against the SO, the file is closed.
Date: May 10, 2021
Electronically approved by
Special Investigations Unit
- 1) The following records contain sensitive personal information and are not being released pursuant to section 34(2) of the Special Investigations Unit Act, 2019. The material portions of the records are summarized below. [Back to text]
The signed English original report is authoritative, and any discrepancy between that report and the French and English online versions should be resolved in favour of the original English report.