Saugeen Shores Police Service

News Release

Re: Special Investigation Unit (SIU) investigation of the death of a 46 year old Port Elgin male while being arrested by the Saugeen Shores Police.

On Friday June 21st 2013 at approximately 10:43 pm officers of the Saugeen Shores Police Service were dispatched to a Port Elgin residence. Officers were responding to a report of a break and enter, home invasion in progress. A 46 year old male had kicked in the front door to the residence and began threatening to kill the five occupants. A male resident of the house fought with the intruder until police arrived.

Calls were made to police by two occupants of the residence and neighbor’s hearing the disturbance. The first of three officers arrived with the next two shortly after. Officers had all “Use of Force” options available to them including pepper spray, baton, Taser and firearm but none were used.

The officers and the occupant of the home struggled with the intruder and he was handcuffed. Once handcuffed it was observed that the male was not breathing and his vital signs were absent. The handcuffs were removed, CPR started and ambulance called. He was taken to the Southampton hospital where he was pronounced dead.

The Special Investigation Unit (SIU) was called to investigate. The SIU is a civilian law enforcement agency, independent of the police, that conducts criminal investigations into circumstances involving police and civilians that have resulted in serious injury, death or allegations of sexual assault. In the course of its investigations, the Unit gathers and assesses evidence, and the Director of the SIU decides whether or not the evidence leads to the reasonable belief that a criminal offence has been committed. If the Director forms such a belief, she or he shall lay a criminal charge against the officer(s), and that charge will then be prosecuted by the Crown Attorney.  If the Director does not form such a belief, she or he cannot lay a criminal charge against the officer(s).

On 2 May 2014 the Director of the SIU Tony Loparco cleared all officers of any criminality.

On behalf of all members of the Saugeen Shores Police Service I wish to express our deepest condolences to the family and friends of the deceased. This is a tragic event and I am proud of this community for the support they have shown his family.

The Police Services Act section 11 now requires the Chief to conduct a review of policies, procedures and conduct of the officers and report to the Police Service Board.

Sincerely

Dan Rivett
Chief of Police

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