The SIU says a Toronto police officer who shot a suspect wasn’t “outside the law” in the take down.
The Director of the Special Investigations Unit says he didn’t “exceed the bounds of legally justifiable force.”
The incident happened in the evening of April 16, 2015 near Jane and Driftwood.
Police heard gunshots in the area and spotted several men getting into a dark coloured car and flee the scene.
The car was tracked to Elmhurst Drive and Cromarty Drive, where officers boxed in the vehicle and attempted to arrest four men.
The driver and two passengers who fled from the vehicle were arrested without incident. A fourth man who also fled the vehicle was chased down by a police officer and shot.
The suspect was taken to hospital with gunshot injuries to his right elbow, chest, and back.
A gun was found in the yard of the home near the man who was shot. Another gun was found in the driveway next door and a third gun was located near the dark coloured vehicle from which the men had fled.
The investigation of the incident by the SIU included statements from other officers on scene, the accounts of civilian residents in the area, police radio communications, results of DNA testing and other forensic examinations, and video recordings captured by the surveillance cameras at a nearby address on Elmhurst Drive and from a witness’s cell phone.
The SIU assigned eight investigators and three forensic investigators to probe the circumstances of this incident.
The Police watchdog’s Director Tony Laparco says, “There is no question that the officers were acting lawfully in deciding to stop the vehicle and arrest its occupants. They had good reason to believe that the man and his associates were involved in the Driftwood Avenue shooting, having seen them run from the scene into a car with a waiting driver.”
“There is also very little doubt on the evidence that the subject officer did not exceed the bounds of legally justifiable force when he discharged his firearm. I am satisfied he would have been fearful for his life at the time of his firearm discharges. The officer would have had every reason to believe that the man had just been involved in a shooting and was armed with a firearm and prepared to use it.”