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News Release

SIU Concludes Investigation into Toronto Shooting

Case Number: 07-TFI-253

TORONTO (14 February, 2008) --- The Director of the Special Investigations Unit (SIU), James Cornish has concluded that, "There are no reasonable grounds to believe that the officer involved in the shooting of a 17-year-old male Toronto youth on December 21, 2007 committed any criminal offence."

The SIU assigned four investigators and three forensic investigators to probe the circumstances surrounding this incident.

The SIU investigation determined that at 8:45 p.m. the Toronto Police Service (TPS) was called to an armed robbery in progress at the Shoppers Drug Mart, 620 Keele St. The male youth who robbed the store with a handgun fled before the TPS arrived. A citizen followed the youth at a distance, and when an officer arrived the citizen was able to tell the officer where the youth went.

The TPS officer located the youth in a laneway and saw that the youth was armed with a handgun. The officer told the youth to drop the gun several times, but instead the youth pointed the gun at the officer. The officer fired seven shots at the youth striking him three times. The youth fell to the ground where he was handcuffed and taken into custody. The youth was taken to hospital where he was treated for non-life threatening injuries. An unloaded 45-calibre handgun was recovered at the scene. A knife was also found in his possession.

Director Cornish said, "The youth was found in possession of an unloaded 45-calibre handgun which he pointed at the TPS officer. I am led to believe the officer had a reasonable basis to fear for her life. The officer had no way of knowing the gun was not loaded. The officer was justified in meeting that threat with potentially lethal force. Fortunately the youth survived."

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