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News Release

SIU Concludes Ottawa Vehicle Injuries Investigation

Case Number: 13-OVI-223

Mississauga (16 October, 2013) --- The Acting Director of the Special Investigations Unit (SIU), Joseph Martino, has concluded that there are no reasonable grounds to charge an Ottawa Police Service officer with any criminal offence in relation to the injuries sustained by a 73-year-old woman and 48-year-old male last month.

The SIU assigned two investigators and two forensic investigators to probe the circumstances of this incident. As part of the investigation, one witness officer and nine civilian witnesses were interviewed. The subject officer consented to an interview with the SIU and provided a copy of her duty notes. 

The SIU investigation found that the following events took place on Friday, September 6, 2013:
• In the morning hours, the subject officer was on duty in a marked cruiser proceeding southbound on Elgin Street. She brought her vehicle to a stop facing a red traffic signal at the intersection of Elgin Street with Sparks Street.
• Following a brief period of time, the officer proceeded southbound through the intersection and struck two individuals who were making their way across Elgin Street along the pedestrian crosswalk. 
• Both pedestrians were taken to The Ottawa Hospital for treatment – the woman for serious injuries including a fractured arm and the man for a concussion.

Acting Director Martino said, “In my view, the subject officer’s conduct at the time in question did not amount to dangerous driving, the criminal offence that arises for consideration in this case. The subject officer states clearly that she drove through the intersection only after the traffic control signal had changed to green. The officer is corroborated in this important evidence by many of the civilian witnesses who said the officer proceeded on a green light.”

Acting Director Martino continued, “The weight of the evidence suggests the officer was proceeding on a green light through the intersection and that, conversely, the pedestrians were in the crosswalk in contravention of the traffic control signal that faced them. In these circumstances, I am satisfied on reasonable grounds that the officer exercised a level of care that fell within the limits prescribed by the criminal law.”

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