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News Release

SIU Investigating Fatal Police-involved Shooting in Exeter

Case Number: 19-PFD-293

Mississauga, ON (4 December, 2019) ---
The province’s Special Investigations Unit is investigating the circumstances surrounding the shooting death of 44-year-old Wade Vanderwal last night in Exeter.

Preliminary information suggests the following:
  • At approximately 6:30 p.m. on December 3, 2019, Ontario Provincial Police officers and firefighters were dispatched to a residence on Simcoe Street for a fire call. 
  • While the first responders were outside the residence, Mr. Vanderwal exited the residence armed with an axe.
  • There was an interaction between him and officers. 
  • Two officers discharged their firearms and Mr. Vanderwal was struck multiple times. He was taken to hospital where he was pronounced dead.

Four investigators and three forensic investigators have been assigned to this incident. At this time, two subject officers and one witness officer have been designated.

The SIU is urging anyone who may have information about this investigation to contact the lead investigator at 1-800-787-8529. The Unit is also urging anyone who may have any video evidence related to this incident to upload that video through the SIU website.

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. 

Lisez ce communiqué en français.

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