Ottawa Police investigation into RCMP V-Division June 2020 vehicle incident during an arrest has concluded

Posted On Tuesday December 01, 2020

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: Tuesday, December 1, 2020   12:15pm

(Ottawa) – On June 3, 2020, the RCMP V-Division asked the Ottawa Police Service (OPS) to conduct a criminal investigation into an incident on June 1st in Kinngait where a member of the community was struck by the opening door of a police vehicle when the RCMP was effecting an arrest in relation to a disturbance/fight in progress.

The OPS has a Memorandum of Understanding with the RCMP V-Division and the Government of Nunavut to conduct independent external investigations in instances of major police incidents involving members of the RCMP.

On June 4th, two Ottawa Police criminal investigators travelled to Iqaluit and commenced a police oversight investigation to determine if there was any criminal responsibility on the part of the RCMP.

OPS investigators interviewed 14 civilian and involved police witnesses, examined third party video of the incident, attended the scene, and examined the involved police vehicle. 

The investigation has determined that the RCMP officer driving the vehicle did not intentionally strike the community member with the vehicle door – whereas the vehicle came to a sliding stop on a snow and ice covered track, the driver’s front tire went off the track, the vehicle dipped forward and the opened driver’s door swung forward and struck the community member.

The OPS concluded that this does not meet the threshold of a criminal offence of an assault or assault with a weapon under the Criminal Code of Canada as the applied force was unintentional. Investigators also deemed that that was no evidence of dangerous operation of a conveyance or criminal negligence and further concluded that the arrest was lawful.

The Government of Nunavut Department of Justice and the RCMP V-Division have been notified of the conclusion and determination of the investigation.

The Ottawa Police Service will not comment further on the matter considering OPS has fulfilled its mandate relating to the criminal investigation into the incident of arrest. 

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