Date: Thursday, October 5, 2023
Victoria, BC – On Thursday, October 5, 2023, the Office of the Police Complaint Commissioner (OPCC) announced a decision to hold a public hearing regarding an incident that occurred on December 25, 2019, where a suspect succumbed to injuries sustained from a less-lethal use of force.
I respect that the OPCC has the right to call a public hearing, and I fully support the measures we have in place to ensure police accountability in this province. However, this incident has already been reviewed by three levels of oversight, including the Independent Investigations Office, a Police Disciplinary Authority, and an independent adjudicator of the investigation – a retired judge, who all found that there was no misconduct in the use of force in this situation.
As a result of the investigations that have taken place so far, VicPD has made recommended changes to note-taking policy, and created clear guidance on reporting requirements in use of force incidents.
At this point, my thoughts are with the family and the officers involved, who have all been subjected to a years-long process that has impacted their ability to move forward with their lives. We will continue to support the member who is the subject of this investigation, and our hearts are with the family who continue to re-live this event through these investigations almost four years later.