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News Release

SIU Concludes Oshawa Firearm Injury Investigation

Case Number: 12-OFI-153

Mississauga (11 July, 2012) --- The Director of the Special Investigations Unit (SIU), Ian Scott, has concluded that there are no reasonable grounds to charge a Durham Regional Police Service (DRPS) officer with a criminal offence in relation to the shooting injury sustained by a 22-year-old man in May of 2012.

The SIU assigned five investigators and three forensic investigators to probe the circumstances of this incident.  The subject officer consented to an interview with the SIU, and provided a copy of his duty notes.  In addition, five witness officers and nine civilian witnesses were interviewed. 

The SIU investigation found that the following events took place on Wednesday, May 30:
• In the morning hours, the man was reportedly involved in two convenience store robberies, as well as the car-jacking of a red Mustang. As a result, he was the focus of a suspect apprehension pursuit by DRPS officers.
• The man drove the red Mustang in a dangerous manner in the Park Road South and Bond Street area, driving over residential lawns and striking parked cars.  As a result, more officers, including the subject officer, were dispatched.
• The subject officer followed the vehicle onto Hillside Avenue and then onto Montrave Avenue.  There are a number of school buildings in this vicinity, and numerous school children were walking in the area. 
• The man was swerving his vehicle from side to side in an apparent attempt to dissuade any police vehicles from passing his vehicle.  An unmarked police vehicle hit the red Mustang near the intersection of Pacific and Cromwell Avenues causing it to spin around and come to a halt.  Other police cruisers stopped their vehicles and four officers, including the subject officer, left their vehicles with their guns drawn. The officers yelled at the man to turn off his engine and get out of the car.  The subject officer approached the driver’s window with his gun pointed at the driver’s door.  The man continued to rev his engine in an apparent attempt to flee the area. An officer was almost directly in front of the vehicle and there were a number of school children in the immediate vicinity.  The Mustang lurched forward.  The subject officer discharged his handgun four times into the driver’s door.  The driver managed to drive eastbound on Pacific Avenue, but was shortly thereafter apprehended on Montrave Avenue.
• He was transported to Lakeridge Health where he was diagnosed as sustaining a firearm injury to his left thigh area but no permanent injury.

Director Scott said, “The man 22-year-old chose to drive in a reckless manner in the middle of the day on residential roads in close proximity to schools.  At the moment of discharge by the subject officer, the man was attempting to dislodge his vehicle with at least one officer in his immediate path and school children in the vicinity.  He refused to comply with police demands to surrender.  The subject officer could reasonably conclude that the man represented an imminent threat of death or serious bodily harm to those around him.  In these exigent circumstances, the subject officer chose to shoot in a manner that would stop the vehicle by disabling the driver but not lead to his death.  As a result, he shot into the driver’s door.  In sum, given the imminent threat that the man’s driving could have caused, I am of the view that the subject officer’s use of force was measured in these circumstances.”

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