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News Release

SIU Concludes Investigation into Death of Man in Durham

Case Number: 05-OCD-128

TORONTO (16 September, 2005) --- The Director of the Special Investigations Unit (SIU) James Cornish, has concluded that none of the Durham Regional Police Service (DRPS) officers are criminally responsible for the death of 45-year-old man in Oshawa.

On August 24, 2005, at about 9:28 a.m., the DRPS was called and told that there was a man in the basement of a home on Crerar Avenue with a gun. Shortly after the police's arrival, the man inside the house fired three shots at two nearby vehicles. The police made repeated efforts to contact the man, who was barricaded inside the home, by telephone and loudhailer.

At about 11:12 a.m., the man answered the phone and spoke with the police negotiator. During the next four hours, the police continued to try and comfort the man and convince him to come out. At 3:13 p.m., the man said he was coming out and at 3:16 p.m., the police heard a muffled shot from within the home. Tear gas was placed inside the house and at 3:37 p.m., the DRPS tactical team entered. The man was found with a fatal gunshot wound to his head.

Director Cornish concluded the officers did all that they reasonably could have done to bring this incident to a peaceful conclusion. He noted the incident commander adjusted to a dynamic and potentially deadly situation and called in a trained negotiator.
The Director stated, "It appeared that all of this effort had worked and that the man was going to give up peacefully until the officers found the man suffering from a self-inflicted wound."

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. 

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