SIU Director’s Report - Case # 21-OVI-258
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Mandate of the SIU
Under the SIU Act, the Director of the SIU must determine based on the evidence gathered in an investigation whether there are reasonable grounds to believe that a criminal offence was committed. If such grounds exist, the Director has the authority to lay a criminal charge against the official. Alternatively, in cases where no reasonable grounds exist, the Director cannot lay charges. Where no charges are laid, a report of the investigation is prepared and released publicly, except in the case of reports dealing with allegations of sexual assault, in which case the SIU Director may consult with the affected person and exercise a discretion to not publicly release the report having regard to the affected person’s privacy interests.
Special Investigations Unit Act, 2019Pursuant to section 34, certain information may not be included in this report. This information may include, but is not limited to, the following:
- The name of, and any information identifying, a subject official, witness official, civilian witness or affected person.
- Information that may result in the identity of a person who reported that they were sexually assaulted being revealed in connection with the sexual assault.
- Information that, in the opinion of the SIU Director, could lead to a risk of serious harm to a person.
- Information that discloses investigative techniques or procedures.
- Information, the release of which is prohibited or restricted by law.
- Information in which a person’s privacy interest in not having the information published clearly outweighs the public interest in having the information published.
Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy ActPursuant to section14 (i.e., law enforcement), certain information may not be included in this report. This information may include, but is not limited to, the following:
- Confidential investigative techniques and procedures used by law enforcement agencies; and
- Information that could reasonably be expected to interfere with a law enforcement matter or an investigation undertaken with a view to a law enforcement proceeding.
Pursuant to section 21 (i.e., personal privacy), protected personal information is not included in this report. This information may include, but is not limited to, the following:
- The names of persons, including civilian witnesses, and subject and witness officials;
- Location information;
- Witness statements and evidence gathered in the course of the investigation provided to the SIU in confidence; and
- Other identifiers which are likely to reveal personal information about individuals involved in the investigation.
Personal Health Information Protection Act, 2004Pursuant to this legislation, any information related to the personal health of identifiable individuals is not included.
Other proceedings, processes, and investigationsInformation may also have been excluded from this report because its release could undermine the integrity of other proceedings involving the same incident, such as criminal proceedings, coroner’s inquests, other public proceedings and/or other law enforcement investigations.
A person sustains a “serious injury” for purposes of the SIU’s jurisdiction if they: sustain an injury as a result of which they are admitted to hospital; suffer a fracture to the skull, or to a limb, rib or vertebra; suffer burns to a significant proportion of their body; lose any portion of their body; or, as a result of an injury, experience a loss of vision or hearing.
In addition, a “serious injury” means any other injury sustained by a person that is likely to interfere with the person’s health or comfort and is not transient or trifling in nature.
This report relates to the SIU’s investigation into the serious injuries a 46-year-old man (“Complainant #1”) and a 17-year-old woman (“Complainant #2”) suffered.
Notification of the SIUOn August 15, 2021, at 7:42 p.m., the Durham Regional Police Service (DRPS) notified the SIU of injuries to a woman and man [names unknown at the time of the call].
DRPS advised that, at approximately 6:45 p.m., a DRPS police vehicle was involved in a motor vehicle collision at Green Road and Nash Road in Clarington with a motorcycle that had a male driving and a female passenger. Both riders suffered fractured legs and the woman also had a fractured pelvis. They were being transported to Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre (SHSC).
The intersection was a four-way stop. Reportedly, the cruiser had come to a stop and, as it cleared the intersection, it collided with the motorcycle.
Date and time team dispatched: 08/15/2021 at 7:56 p.m.
Date and time SIU arrived on scene: 08/15/2021 at 8:52 p.m.
Number of SIU Investigators assigned: 4
Number of SIU Forensic Investigators assigned: 2
Affected Persons (aka “Complainant”):
Complainant #1 46-year-old male interviewed, medical records obtained and reviewed
Complainant #2 17-year-old female interviewed, medical records obtained and reviewed
The Complainants were interviewed between August 25, 2021 and September 9, 2021.
Civilian Witnesses (CW)
CW #1 Interviewed
CW #2 Interviewed
CW #3 Interviewed
CW #4 Interviewed
The civilian witnesses were interviewed between August 16 and 18, 2021.
Subject Official (SO)SO Declined interview and to provide notes, as is the subject official’s legal right
Witness Official (WO)WO Interviewed
The witness official was interviewed on August 16, 2021.
The Scene The scene was located at the intersection of Nash Road and Green Road in Clarington.
SIU Forensic Investigators arrived at the intersection on August 15, 2021, at 11:00 p.m. The intersection was controlled by stop signs and stop lines at each roadway. There was no overhead lighting in the area. All the roadways were paved with asphalt, and each roadway was flat and level. The weather was clear and dry.
Green Road ran in a north/south direction, and the speed limit along this roadway was posted at 70 km/h. Nash Road ran in an east/west direction. The speed limit along Nash Road west of the intersection was posted at 60 km/h. There were two involved motor vehicles on scene.
The DRPS police vehicle was a Ford Explorer. It was stopped in the westbound lane of Nash Road west of Green Road, and it faced west. It had subdued DRPS markings and emergency lights on the inside of the cruiser. It sustained extensive damage to its front end.
The motorcycle was a Yamaha. The motorcycle was in the grass/ditch among small trees in the southwest corner of the intersection. The front wheel was in the ground and the rear wheel faced straight up to the sky. The seat and handlebars faced the intersection. Immediately in front of the motorcycle were several gouge marks in the small trees. The debris field from the collision was generally in the southwest corner of the intersection. Items of clothing and medical waste were located in the area.
Examination of the scene did not provide any skids, gouges, or other physical deformities in the asphalt to assist with identifying vehicle maneuverings.
The scene was photographed and mapped using Total Station equipment.
On August 16, 2021, at 1:45 a.m., a Traffic Reconstructionist with DRPS agreed that there were no markings on the roadway to assist with the investigation.
Both vehicles were to be removed, and the involved police vehicle would have information downloaded and would be inspected for mechanical fitness.
Figure 1 – The police vehicle
Figure 2 – The motorcycle
Automatic Vehicle Locator (AVL) and Crash Data Retrieval (CDR) Data – SummaryAt 6:53:42 p.m., the SO proceeded northbound on Nash Road at 67.23 km/h in a 60 km/h zone, just before the road turned to the left to go westbound towards the intersection of Green Road. This sequence was 438 metres east of the intersection and scene of the collision.
Fifteen seconds later at 6:53:57 p.m., the SO proceeded westbound on Nash Road at 95.01 km/h in a 60 km/h zone approximately 144 metres east of the intersection at Green Road.
Fifteen seconds later at 6:54:12 p.m., the SO was stopped at the intersection of Nash Road and Green Road.
The collision was called-in on the police radio at 6:54:22 p.m. It is unknown if the SO called in the collision before he checked on the riders of the motorcycle.
The SO’s airbags did not deploy and, as a result, the CDR information was blank.
Video/Audio/Photographic Evidence 
Communication RecordingsAt 6:54:22 p.m., the SO broadcast that he was at Nash and Green Roads, and a motorcycle had run a stop sign and struck him. Two people were injured, and he requested two ambulances right away.
The rest of the DRPS communications audio pertained to police officers and emergency services responding, and the management of the scene.
Materials Obtained from Police Service
Upon request, the SIU received the following materials and documents from DRPS between August 16, 2021 and September 28, 2021:
• AVL Data;
• Detailed Call Summary;
• Communication Recordings;
• General Occurrence;
• Motor Vehicle Collision Investigations Policy;
• Narrative-the WO;
• Notes-the WO;
• CDR Data;
• Unit History – the SO; and
• Vehicle Maintenance History.
Materials Obtained from Other Sources
The SIU obtained and reviewed the following records from other sources:
• EMS Incident Reports;
• Ambulance Call Report;
• SHSC Medical Record-Complainant #1; and
• SHSC Medical Record-Complainant #2.
Shortly before 7:00 p.m. of August 15, 2021, the SO was traveling westbound on Nash Road in his police SUV approaching Green Road. The officer was responding to a non-emergency call for service. The SO came to a stop at the Green Road stop sign. The intersection was controlled by stop signs in every direction. As the officer entered the intersection to continue westbound, the front end of his SUV collided with a southbound motorcycle.
Complainant #1 was the operator of the motorcycle. Complainant #2 was his passenger. Complainant #1 was driving Complainant #2 to his residence so she could spend time with his daughter (Complainant #2’s friend). As Complainant #1 travelled south on Green Road approaching the Nash Road intersection, he pulled into the northbound lane to pass an SUV stopped for the stop sign in front of him. Once past the SUV and into the intersection, Complainant #1 swerved back into the southbound lane and was struck by the cruiser. The time was 6:54 p.m.
The collision sent the motorcycle careening into the southwest grassy and forested corner of the intersection, where it came to a rest. Complainant #1 and Complainant #2 were propelled in the same direction.
The SO brought his cruiser to a stop just west of the intersection, exited his vehicle and rushed to render assistance to Complainant #1 and Complainant #2. Ambulances were called to the scene and transported the pair to hospital.
Complainant #1 had his left leg amputated as a result of injuries sustained in the collision. Complainant #2 suffered fractures of the left femur, left knee and spine.
Section 219 and 221, Criminal Code -- Criminal negligence causing bodily harm
(a) in doing anything, or(b) in omitting to do anything that it is his duty to do,
Section 320.13, Criminal Code – Dangerous operation causing bodily harm
Analysis and Director's Decision
The offences that arises for consideration are dangerous driving causing bodily harm and criminal negligence causing bodily harm contrary to sections 320.13(2) and 221 of the Criminal Code, respectively. The former is premised, in part, on conduct that amounts to a marked departure from the level of care that a reasonable person would have exercised in the circumstances. The latter captures more serious cases of neglect that demonstrate a wanton or reckless disregard for the lives or safety of other persons. It is not made out unless, inter alia, the neglect consists of a marked and substantial departure from a reasonable standard of care. In the instant case, the issue is whether there was a want of care on the part of the SO that caused or contributed to the collision and / or was sufficiently egregious as to attract criminal sanction. Clearly, there was not.
The evidence establishes that the SO did not transgress the limits of care prescribed by the criminal law. The officer was in the lawful course of his duties responding to a call for service when he came to a stop at the Green Road intersection. Thereafter, observing a southbound SUV having come to a stop at Nash Road, there is nothing to suggest that the SO was derelict in entering the intersection when he did – he had the right of way and could not have reasonably anticipated that a motorcycle would dart out from behind the stopped SUV, overtake it in the opposite lane of traffic, and enter the intersection without stopping. Once in the intersection, I am satisfied there was nothing the SO could have done to avert the collision given the speeds and distances involved. Thereafter, the record indicates that the SO acted with dispatch in arranging for prompt medical care to the scene.
For the foregoing reasons, there are no grounds to believe that the SO comported himself without due care and regard for public safety vis-à-vis the collision. Accordingly, there is no basis for proceeding with criminal charges in this case.
Date: October 12, 2021
Electronically approved by
Special Investigations Unit
- 1) The following records contain sensitive personal information and are not being released pursuant to section 34(2) of the Special Investigations Unit Act, 2019. The material portions of the records are summarized below. [Back to text]
The signed English original report is authoritative, and any discrepancy between that report and the French and English online versions should be resolved in favour of the original English report.