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News Release

SIU Concludes Toronto Vehicle Injuries Investigation

Case Number: 14-TVI-084

Mississauga (9 July, 2014) ---
The Director of the Special Investigations Unit (SIU), Tony Loparco, has concluded that there are no reasonable grounds to charge a Toronto Police Service (TPS) officer with any criminal offence in relation to injuries suffered by a 33-year-old man in April of this year. 

The SIU assigned three investigators, two forensic investigators and one collision reconstructionist to probe the circumstances of this incident. Five witness officers and six civilian witnesses were interviewed.  The subject officer consented to an interview and provided a copy of his notes.  As part of the investigation the SIU also collected the communications recordings of TPS radio transmissions and 911 calls, and the in-car video and GPS report from the subject officer’s vehicle. 

The SIU investigation found that the following events took place on Tuesday, April 8, 2014:
  • At approximately 11:30 p.m., the subject officer- the driver of a marked TPS cruiser - and his partner, saw a Honda Civic operating without front lights in the area of King Street and Bathurst Street in downtown Toronto. 
  • The officers suspected that the driver of the Civic was impaired and began to follow the Civic. 
  • They continued to follow the vehicle as it turned right onto Adelaide Street from Bathurst Street, then north on Spadina Street and right onto Queen Street.  
  • In the area of Queen Street and McCaul Street, the officers checked the Civic’s licence plate number and confirmed that the car had been reported stolen. 
  • The subject officer activated his emergency lights and pulled alongside the Civic in an attempt to stop it. 
  • The man, who was the driver of the Civic, did not stop and instead accelerated northbound on McCaul Street, reaching speeds of 130-140 km/h as he approached Dundas Street.
  • The subject officer reported speeds of 80 km/h as he travelled north on McCaul Street in pursuit of the Civic. 
  • The man ran a red light at the Dundas Street intersection and at that point the officers decided to discontinue the pursuit. 
  • Shortly thereafter, the driver lost control of the Civic, sideswiped a parked vehicle and toppled into a parking lot on the east side of McCaul Street, just north of Baldwin Street. The Civic came to rest on its passenger side.  
  • The man climbed out of the car and ran northwest across the road to an area between houses on the west side of McCaul Street.  
  • At the time of the collision, the officers were approximately 200 metres away. 
  • They arrived at the scene and located the man between the houses. 
  • During the process of arrest, there was a brief altercation between the man and the officers as they attempted to handcuff and take him into custody.  
  • An ambulance was called when it appeared the man had suffered an injury and he was taken to St. Michael’s Hospital for treatment. He was diagnosed with fractured ribs and a collapsed lung.

Director Loparco concluded, “The subject officer was clearly in the execution of his duties when he first followed and then pursued the Honda Civic.  With confirmation of the fact that the Civic had been reported stolen, the subject officer was entitled under O. Reg. 266/10 – the regulation governing police pursuits in the province – to initiate a police pursuit in an effort to stop the vehicle.  As to the manner in which the subject officer conducted the pursuit, I am satisfied that he exercised a level of care that fell within the limits prescribed by the criminal law.  This was a very short pursuit in time and distance – lasting some 12 seconds over approximately 400 metres.  With respect to the physical altercation that occurred between the officers and the man during his arrest, I am satisfied on the weight of the evidence that the officers used no more force than was reasonably necessary to overcome the man’s resistance to being handcuffed.  In the final analysis, whether the man’s injuries were caused by the collision, the force used by the officers during his arrest, or both, I am satisfied that there are no reasonable grounds to proceed with charges in this case.”

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. 

Jasbir Dhillon, jasbir.dhillon@ontario.ca
SIU Communications/Service des communications, UES
Telephone/No de téléphone: 416-622-2342 or/ou 1-800-787-8529 extension 2342