SIU Concludes Reopened G20 Nobody Investigation
Case Number: 10-TCI-118
Other News Releases Related to Case 10-TCI-118
Director Scott said, "In my view, there are no reasonable grounds to believe that any identifiable officer committed a criminal offence with respect to the outstanding aspects of the investigation into the injuries sustained by Mr. Nobody related to his arrest during the G20 demonstrations in Toronto on June 26, 2010. It may be recalled that the SIU previously charged TPS Constable Babak Andalib-Goortani on December 21, 2010 with assault with a weapon, contrary to section 267(a) of the Criminal Code in connection with the Nobody investigation."
The investigation arose from the G20 protests in downtown Toronto held over the June 26 and 27, 2010 weekend. After an initial investigation, the Director determined that there were no reasonable grounds to believe that any identifiable police officer committed a criminal offence against Mr. Nobody. The Director stated in a news release dated November 25, 2010 that the first assault allegation was "corroborated by a video recording that was uploaded on Youtube under the title of ‘Toronto G20, Peaceful Protester Tackled and Roughed Up.’" He further stated that it was impossible to identify the perpetrator, and accordingly no charges were laid at that time.
On November 30, 2010, the SIU reopened its investigation based upon the receipt of the original video made by videographer, Mr. Bridge. It will also be recalled that Mr. Bridge came forward after the TPS Chief of Police said on a CBC radio morning show that his video had been significantly tampered with. The original video was examined and found to contain imagery of a much higher resolution than the uploaded Youtube version.
Director Scott stated, "During this part of the reopened investigation, twelve witness officers said by TPS to be in the vicinity of and/or involved in the Nobody arrest were interviewed. They were shown the Bridge video of the incident, and stills taken from other videos. None were able to positively identify themselves as being depicted in the videos, nor could they identify the other involved officers. However, through an analysis of the video imagery and an interview with another officer whose name was provided by TPS, the SIU was able to positively identify Constable Andalib-Goortani as a subject officer. He was subsequently charged with the offence of assault with a weapon on December 21, 2010.
"After the December 21, 2010 charge against Cst Andalib-Goortani, the investigation continued in an attempt to positively identify three other subject officers involved in the alleged excessive use of force against Mr. Nobody. The names of these three subject officers were provided by the TPS because they appeared, based on TPS’s own investigation, to be involved in using force against Mr. Nobody. The subject officers declined to provide a statement to the SIU, as is their right. Fourteen more interviews took place, two with civilian witnesses who took photographs of the Nobody incident and twelve more TPS officers. As well, one of the witness officers interviewed prior to December 21, 2010 was re-interviewed. Of interest are three groupings of officers. One group was present during the apprehension and arrest of Adam Nobody and another consisted of supervisors of one of the subject officers. Finally, there were two officers involved in conducting an internal administrative investigation of the Nobody incident from the Professional Standards branch of TPS. These investigations are referred to as ‘s. 11 investigations’ because they are mandated by s. 11 of the SIU regulations to the Police Services Act. They are designed to look into the policies of a police service and the conduct of its officers whenever the SIU has been notified of an incident.
"With respect to the first grouping - those present during the arrest - five more officers were interviewed. In total, then, seventeen officers who were said by TPS to be present at and/or involved in the arrest of Adam Nobody have been interviewed; none made a positive identification of any subject officers striking the complainant. Further, four supervisory officers of one of the subject officers were interviewed. No officer in the supervisory group made a positive identification of that subject officer striking the complainant.
"Finally, two officers involved in the TPS s.11 investigation were interviewed. While they both provided some circumstantial evidence of identity of the subject officers in question, I am of the view that it is so weak that it fails to meet the test of probable grounds to believe an identified officer committed a criminal offence."
Director Scott concluded, "In sum, no individual, police or civilian, can point to any of the three remaining subject officers under investigation depicted in the videos or still photographs striking Mr. Nobody, and make a positive identification. Based on the totality of information on the issue of the identity of these three subject officers, I cannot form reasonable grounds that any identifiable officer was involved in excessive use of force against Mr. Nobody in this aspect of the investigation. This investigation, therefore, is closed."
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.