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News Release

SIU Concludes Investigation into Sarnia Vehicle Death

Case Number: 12-PVD-183

Mississauga (30 July, 2012) --- The Director of the Special Investigations Unit (SIU), Ian Scott, has concluded that there are no reasonable grounds to charge an Ontario Provincial Police officer with any criminal offence in relation to the death of a 34-year-old man in June of 2012. 

The SIU assigned four investigators, two forensic investigators and a collision reconstructionist to probe the circumstances of this incident.  In addition, two witness officers and thirty-one civilian witnesses were interviewed.  The subject officer did not provide a copy of his duty notes to the SIU and declined to be interviewed, as is his legal right. 

The SIU investigation found that the following events took place on Monday, June 25:
• In the early hours of the day, the subject officer was on general patrol westbound on Hwy 402 on the outskirts of Sarnia when he spotted a motorcycle travelling at approximately 180 km/hr. 
• The officer began following the motorcycle and then initiated a suspect apprehension pursuit.  The driver of the motorcycle exited at the Indian Road turn-off and sped northbound on Indian Road, a four lane residential road with a speed limit of 50 km/hr.  The officer discontinued his pursuit shortly after the man sped through a red signal light at the intersection of Indian Road and Rosedale Avenue. 
• The man continued northbound, entered the intersection of Indian Road and Michigan Avenue against another red signal light, and struck an SUV travelling eastbound on Michigan Avenue.  The impact of the collision caused both the man’s death and serious injuries to the driver of the SUV. 
• The forensic reconstructionist calculated the speed of the motorcycle at between 175 and 182 km/hr just before the brakes were applied.

Director Scott said, “In my view, the subject officer had the lawful authority to initiate the suspect apprehension pursuit pursuant to the Police Services Act because he could have had the grounds to believe the motorcyclist was committing the criminal offence of dangerous driving due to its speed.  The subject officer discontinued the pursuit shortly after the motorcyclist disobeyed a red signal light, presumably because of the risk to public safety if the pursuit continued.  The driver of the motorcycle chose to continue to drive in a dangerous manner, causing the vehicle collision at the intersection of Indian Road and Michigan Avenue.  In my view, he was the author of his own misfortune by driving in the manner he did and unfortunately it led to not only his own death but to the driver of the SUV sustaining serious injuries.  Accordingly, I have no grounds to believe that the subject officer committed a criminal offence.”

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,
SIU Communications/Service des communications, UES
Telephone/No de téléphone: 416-622-2342 or/ou 1-800-787-8529 extension 2342