SIU Director’s Report - Case # 22-OCI-182
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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.
- 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 injury of a 34-year-old man (the “Complainant”).
Notification of the SIUOn July 14, 2022, at 3:46 a.m., the Hamilton Police Service (HPS) contacted the SIU with the following information.
At 12:52 a.m., police officers from the HPS High Enforcement Action Team were sent to investigate possible stolen licence plates on a vehicle in the area of Barton Street East and Kinrade Avenue. When the Complainant approached the vehicle, police officers attempted to arrest him. The Complainant fled on foot. The police officers chased the Complainant and took him to the ground nearby. The Complainant complained of a sore shoulder and was taken to the Hamilton General Hospital. He was diagnosed with a fractured collarbone and subsequently released from hospital.
The TeamDate and time team dispatched: 07/14/2022 at 7:20 a.m.
Date and time SIU arrived on scene: 07/14/2022 at 8:45 a.m.
Number of SIU Investigators assigned: 3
Number of SIU Forensic Investigators assigned: 0
Affected Person (aka “Complainant”):34-year-old male; interviewed; medical records obtained and reviewed
The Complainant was interviewed on July 15, 2022.
Civilian Witness (CW) CW Interviewed
The civilian witness was interviewed on July 16, 2022.
Subject Official (SO) SO Interviewed, but declined to submit notes, as is the subject official’s legal right
The subject official was interviewed on September 1, 2022.
Witness Official (WO) WO Interviewed
The witness official was interviewed on July 26, 2022.
The Scene The Complainant sustained his injury in a gravel parking lot situated at the corner of Barton Street East and Kinrade Avenue. The parking lot was directly behind a business on the east side of Kinrade Avenue.
Video/Audio/Photographic Evidence The SIU searched for and obtained audio and video records of relevance, summaries of which are set out below.
HPS Radio CommunicationsThe SO advised that an arrest had been made at Barton Street East and Kinrade Avenue. The SO requested an ambulance because the man [now known to be the Complainant] indicated that he had popped his shoulder out. It was confirmed that the plate on the Complainant’s vehicle was stolen.
Video Footage from BusinessOn July 16, 2022, the owner of the business advised that the camera system in use at their premises was old. Neither she nor her husband knew how to isolate and transfer the required footage. SIU investigators used an iPhone to record one minute, and 44 seconds of footage being played on the screen.
The camera was situated at the back of the business and pointed out to Kinrade Avenue.
At 12:47 a.m., on July 14, 2022, the back end of a black vehicle was captured. A second vehicle could be seen parked alongside the passenger side of the black vehicle
At 12:47:34 a.m., the Complainant walked into the parking lot and proceeded to the passenger side of the black vehicle.
At 12:47:40 a.m., the Complainant disappeared, and a white light was turned on from beyond the black car.
At 12:47:41 a.m., the Complainant ran back towards Kinrade Avenue. As he reached the back of the black car, his body was slightly bent forward, his right foot was on the ground and his left knee bent. A person was observed between the two cars with their right arm outstretched.
At 12:47:42 a.m., the Complainant took a step forward and his left knee was bent in the forward position while the right leg was extended backward. He began to lose his balance forward. The person observed chasing the Complainant had their right foot forward. They were very close to, but not touching the Complainant’s extended leg. The Complainant fell forward with his left shoulder tucked inward and made two complete rolls in the parking lot.
At 12:47:44 a.m., the Complainant was into his third roll as he went off screen onto the sidewalk. The person slowed down and attempted not to run onto the Complainant, as they disappeared off screen.
At 12:48:17 a.m., a man walked back towards the black car.
At 12:48:20 a.m., the man disappeared between the two cars.
At 12:48:43 a.m., the screen went black.
Video Footage - John Howard Society (JHS)The camera was located on the northeast corner of the JHS building and overlooked the sidewalk, a portion of the parking lot, and the entrance to the parking lot behind the JHS. The footage imagery was consistent with the imagery captured by the camera at the business.
Materials Obtained from Police ServiceUpon request, the SIU reviewed the following materials from the HPS between July 19 and 21, 2022:
- General Report;
- Communications recordings;
- Email with list of involved officers;
- Hamilton Subject Profile Report;
- Notes – the WO; and
- Event Chronology.
Materials Obtained from Other SourcesThe SIU obtained and reviewed the following records from the following other sources:
- Video footage – business;
- Video footage - JHS; and
- Medical Records - Hamilton Health Sciences.
In the early morning of July 14, 2022, the SO and WO, in plainclothes and unmarked cars, arrived in the area of Kinrade Avenue and Barton Street East to investigate a reportedly stolen vehicle. The vehicle – a Chevrolet Monte Carlo – was located in the parking lot behind the business at the southeast corner of the intersection.
The SO parked beside the Chevrolet and waited in the passenger seat of his vehicle for the driver of the car to return. The plan was to arrest the person before they entered the Chevrolet. The WO parked in a parking lot directly across Kinrade Avenue. He would wait in his car and exit to assist the SO with the arrest when the time came.
At about 12:45 a.m., the Complainant approached the Chevrolet on foot. As he neared the vehicle, he used a keyless fob to unlock the doors, activating the Chevrolet’s interior lights. Within moments, he was confronted by the SO.
The SO attempted to take hold of the Complainant and grabbed the strap of a duffle bag he was carrying. The Complainant turned to flee from the officer. He took several steps towards the sidewalk, lost his balance, and fell to the ground, fracturing his right clavicle in the process.
The SO, with the help of the WO, arrived quickly at the Complainant’s location on the ground and proceeded to arrest him without further incident.
The Complainant complained of shoulder pain after his arrest and was taken to hospital where his injury was diagnosed.
Section 25(1), Criminal Code -- Protection of Persons Acting Under Authority
(a) as a private person,(b) as a peace officer or public officer,(c) in aid of a peace officer or public officer, or(d) by virtue of his office,
Analysis and Director's Decision
Pursuant to section 25(1) of the Criminal Code, police officers are immune from criminal liability for force used in the course of their duties provided such force was reasonably necessary in the execution of an act that they were required or authorized to do by law.
Given what the SO knew of the reports of a stolen vehicle in the area of Kinrade Avenue and Barton Street East, information that was confirmed by police records checks, I am satisfied that the officer had lawful grounds to arrest the Complainant for being in possession of stolen property.
With respect to the force used by the SO, namely, taking a hold of the duffle bag strap and controlling the Complainant’s arms in the process of applying the handcuffs, this was clearly no more than was necessary to effect the Complainant’s arrest. As for the injury, the Complainant is alone responsible; he lost his footing trying to escape apprehension through no fault of the officer.
For the foregoing reasons, there are no grounds to believe that the SO comported himself other than lawfully in his dealings with the Complainant. As such, there is no basis for proceeding with criminal charges in this case. The file is closed.
Date: November 10, 2022
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.