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News Release

SIU Concludes Peterborough Vehicle Injuries Investigation

Case Number: 14-PVI-106

Mississauga (10 November, 2014) ---
The Director of the Special Investigations Unit (SIU), Tony Loparco, has concluded that there are no reasonable grounds to charge an officer with the Ontario Provincial Police (OPP), Peterborough County Detachment, with any criminal offence in relation to the vehicle injuries sustained by a 41-year-old man in May of this year. 

The SIU assigned seven investigators, two forensic investigators and a collision reconstructionist to probe the circumstances of this incident. As part of the investigation, four witness officers and eight civilian witnesses were interviewed. The subject officer declined to be interviewed or provide a copy of his notes to the SIU, as is his legal right.  

The SIU investigation found that the following events took place on Saturday, May 10, 2014: 
  • At approximately 5:30 p.m. that day, the man was driving a green pick-up truck eastbound on Hwy #7.  
  • The truck’s rear passenger tire was flat, the vehicle was fishtailing and swerving from side-to-side, and items from the bed of the truck, including a lawnmower and step ladder, were being deposited onto the roadway.  
  • At the intersection of Hwy #7 and Television Road, the man almost drove through a red light, coming to an abrupt stop in the intersection well past the stop line and forcing a southbound vehicle to swerve to avoid a collision.   
  • The subject officer was on duty in an unmarked police vehicle travelling west along Hwy #7 when he observed the man’s vehicle pass him in the area of Keene Road.  
  • The officer performed a U-turn on the roadway and began to pursue the truck. 
  • Seconds later, the pick-up truck crossed into the westbound lanes of the highway and struck a mini-van, approximately 300 metres west of Burnham Line.  
  • The man sustained serious injuries in the collision, consisting of multiple broken bones. The occupants of the mini-van sustained less serious injuries.  

Director Loparco concluded, “The subject officer was within his rights to want to stop the truck in light of the erratic manner in which it was being operated.  Additionally, his engagement with the pick-up truck was very brief.  The evidence indicates the collision occurred within a minute or less and under a kilometre from the location the officer had first observed the pickup.  Indeed, it is not entirely clear that the man was even aware he was being followed by an officer at any point.  During this time, there is no suggestion that the officer drove at excessive speed or in some other dangerous fashion.  In fact, it does not appear that the subject officer was ever very close to the pick-up truck.  The roadway was dry, visibility was good and traffic appears to have been light to moderate.  In the circumstances, there is little doubt, in my view, that the subject officer exercised a level of care during the course of his brief engagement with the man’s vehicle that fell well 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. 

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