No Basis to Charge Officer in Relation to Pursuit Prior to Napanee Collision
(29 October, 2020) ---
On the night of April 5, 2020, an Ontario Provincial Police officer was performing speed enforcement on Highway 401, west of Beechwood Road in Napanee, when he clocked an approaching Jeep Compass at 176 km/h. The officer began to pursue the vehicle with the intention of stopping it, but the driver would not stop. Instead, she continued to speed eastward for a short period before taking an off-ramp. The driver lost control of the vehicle as she attempted to negotiate the exit curve and crashed into a ditch. Two passengers from the vehicle – a 27-year-old woman and a 31-year-old man – were seriously injured. The Director of the Special Investigations Unit, Joseph Martino, has determined that the officer comported himself within the limits of the law as he pursued the Jeep Compass, and as such, there is no basis for proceeding with criminal charges in this case and the file is closed.
The SIU is an independent government agency that investigates the conduct of officials (police officers as well as special constables with the Niagara Parks Commission and peace officers with the Legislative Protective Service) that may have resulted in death, serious injury, sexual assault and/or the discharge of a firearm at a person. All investigations are conducted by SIU investigators who are civilians. Under the Special Investigations Unit Act, the Director of the SIU must
- consider whether the official has committed a criminal offence in connection with the incident under investigation
- depending on the evidence, cause a criminal charge to be laid against the official where grounds exist for doing so, or close the file without any charges being laid
- publicly report the results of its investigations
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SIU Communications/Service des communications, UES