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News Release

SIU Concludes Death Investigation in Cornwall

Case Number: 12-OCD-144

Mississauga (9 July, 2012) --- The Director of the Special Investigations Unit (SIU), Ian Scott, has concluded that there are no reasonable grounds to charge an officer with the Cornwall Community Police Service with any criminal offence in relation to the death of a 64-year-old man in May of 2012.

The SIU assigned three investigators and two forensic investigators to probe the circumstances of this incident.  The subject officer consented to an interview with the SIU and did provide a copy of his duty notes.  Four witness officers and three civilian witnesses were interviewed. 

The SIU investigation found that the following events took place on Wednesday, May 23, 2012:
• By all accounts, the man was in a depressed state and drinking prodigious amounts of alcohol while sitting in his motor vehicle on the third level of the Cornwall Square Mall parking garage. 
• The subject officer was dispatched to the location.  When he arrived, he saw the man sitting on a wooded bumper guard along the parking lot’s north wall, close to his car.  The man said to the subject officer that he was not going through this again, and disappeared over the side of the wall. 
• The subject officer looked over the side and saw the man lying unconscious on the ground.  He called for assistance and drove down to the first level where he performed chest compressions on the comatose man.  Paramedics arrived and transported him to Cornwall Community Hospital, where he was pronounced dead. 
• A post-mortem examination concluded that the man’s cause of death was a pattern of injuries in keeping with a descent from a height. 

Director Scott said, “There is no suggestion on the basis of this investigation that the subject officer was a causal factor in the man’s demise.  It would appear that the man did not want any further involvement with the police and decided to take his own life as opposed to be taken into custody.” 

The SIU is an arm’s length agency that investigates reports involving police where there has been death, serious injury or allegations of sexual assault. Under the Police Services Act, the Director of the SIU must

  • consider whether an officer has committed a criminal offence  in connection with the incident under investigation
  • depending on the evidence, lay a criminal charge against the officer if appropriate or close the file without any charges being laid
  • report the results of any investigations to the Attorney General. 

Monica Hudon, monica.hudon@ontario.ca
SIU Communications/Service des communications, UES
Telephone/No de téléphone: 416-622-2342 or/ou 1-800-787-8529 extension 2342