SIU Director’s Report - Case # 22-OCD-267


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Mandate of the SIU

The Special Investigations Unit is a civilian law enforcement agency that investigates incidents involving an official where there has been death, serious injury, the discharge of a firearm at a person or an allegation of sexual assault. Under the Special Investigations Unit Act, 2019 (SIU Act), officials are defined as police officers, special constables of the Niagara Parks Commission and peace officers under the Legislative Assembly Act. The SIU’s jurisdiction covers more than 50 municipal, regional and provincial police services across Ontario.

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.

Information Restrictions

Special Investigations Unit Act, 2019

Pursuant 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 Act

Pursuant to section 14 (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, 2004

Pursuant to this legislation, any information related to the personal health of identifiable individuals is not included.

Other proceedings, processes, and investigations

Information 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.

Mandate Engaged

Pursuant to section 15 of the SIU Act, the SIU may investigate the conduct of officials, be they police officers, special constables of the Niagara Parks Commission or peace officers under the Legislative Assembly Act, that may have resulted in death, serious injury, sexual assault or the discharge of a firearm at a person.

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 death of a 22-year-old man (the “Complainant”).

The Investigation

Notification of the SIU

On October 11, 2022, at 10:11 p.m., the South Simcoe Police Service (SSPS) contacted the SIU with the following information.

On October 11, 2022, at approximately 8:00 p.m., SSPS officers responded to a residence in the area of 25th Sideroad and 9 Line in Innisfil for a domestic incident call. Upon their arrival, they came under fire from the residence. During an exchange of gunfire, two officers were struck. Also struck was a male [now known to be the Complainant]. The Complainant died at the scene. The officers [now known to be Officer #1 and Officer #2] were taken to the Royal Victoria Hospital in Barrie where one officer [now known to be Officer #1] had succumbed to his injuries.

The Team

Date and time team dispatched: 10/11/2022 at 11:08 p.m.

Date and time SIU arrived on scene: 10/12/2022 at 12:23 a.m.

Number of SIU Investigators assigned: 7
Number of SIU Forensic Investigators assigned: 3

Affected Person (aka “Complainant”):

22-year-old male; deceased

Civilian Witnesses (CW)

CW #1 Interviewed
CW #2 Interviewed
CW #3 Interviewed
CW #4 Interviewed
CW #5 Interviewed

The civilian witnesses were interviewed between October 12 and 13, 2022.

Subject Official (SO)

SO Declined interview, as is the subject official’s legal right; notes received and reviewed

Witness Officials (WO)

WO #1 Not interviewed; notes received and reviewed
WO #2 Not interviewed; notes received and reviewed
WO #3 Not interviewed; notes received and reviewed


The Scene

The incident occurred inside a house in the area of 25th Sideroad and 9 Line, Innisfil.

Upon SIU arrival, the scene was protected by police officers from several police services, and surrounded by yellow police tape.

There were various items related to Emergency Medical Service (EMS) personnel being on the scene. These items were in the porch area. Also on the porch was a ballistic vest with Officer #2’s name on it.

The front screen door was ajar. There were a couple of holes in the screen. The main door was open - its glass had been smashed with a large portion of the glass on the floor behind the door in the small vestibule. On the door threshold was an ‘Emergency Response Unit’ (ERU) ball cap.

On the hardwood floor of the upper level of the residence, at the top of the stairs, was a small table against the wall. A single, empty brass .40 calibre cartridge [exhibit 1] was located underneath the table. Nothing was found upon the SIU’s first inspection of the remainder of the upper level.

Along the wall of the vestibule was an empty brass .40 calibre cartridge [exhibit 2]. On the lower shelf of the small table in the vestibule was a deformed copper-jacketed lead core bullet [exhibit 3]. A back panel of a ballistic vest was in the corner of the vestibule just to the left of the open door. In front of the open door was another empty brass .40 calibre cartridge [exhibit 004]. Two more empty brass .40 calibre cartridges [exhibits 5 & 6] were found behind the open main door on top of the broken glass and in front of the closet doors.

The stairs leading down to the lower level were littered with various items. On the first step was an empty silver-coloured .40 calibre cartridge [exhibit 7]. A ballistic panel was lying on the first and second stair against the wall. On the fifth stair was an empty brass .40 calibre cartridge [exhibit 8]. On the sixth stair were two, empty brass .40 calibre cartridges [exhibits 9 & 10]. On the side of the stair was an empty brass 7.62mm cartridge [exhibit 11]. On the bottom landing was an empty brass 7.62mm cartridge [exhibit 12] along with two, empty brass .40 calibre cartridges [exhibit 13 & 14].

There was a small hole in the wallpaper and drywall along the wall adjacent to the sixth stair. There was a second defect in the wall adjacent to the seventh stair.

Through the basement doorway, there was a large room with a hardwood floor. An empty brass 7.62mm calibre cartridge [exhibit 15] was noted on the floor, just past the doorway. An empty brass .40 calibre cartridge [exhibit 16] was on the floor by the door frame. An empty brass 7.62mm cartridge [exhibit 17] was against the wall. Another empty brass 7.62mm cartridge [exhibit 18] was on the floor near the doorway.

A baseball cap [exhibit 19] was located on the floor. It had a large hole in the top area of the cap and was stained with a red, blood-like substance.

The deceased, the Complainant, was located on the floor of the room. He had a pair of gloves on his hands that were in handcuffs behind his back. Over his sweater, he wore a ballistic vest. The vest covered the area of his vital organs, and the front and rear panels contained steel plates. His face was covered with a red, blood-like substance and he had a similar substance near his left ankle. A large area of the floor around the deceased was stained with the red, blood-like substance.

Beyond the Complainant’s head, on the floor, was a Sergi Gravrilovich Simonov (SKS) semi-automatic rifle with a wooden fore-end and stock. It had a hinge magazine that was empty. An empty brass 7.62mm cartridge [exhibit 20] was located between the ball cap and the deceased. There was another 7.62mm cartridge [exhibit 21] on the floor by the Complainant’s left knee as well as another near his head [exhibit 22]. Nearby was yet another empty brass 7.62mm cartridge [exhibit 23].

An open gun safe was located in the basement bedroom. A .22 calibre semi-automatic rifle was in the safe with two viable 7.62mm cartridges near the rifle. An empty brass 7.62mm cartridge was located on the floor along the wall of the room [exhibit 24] and a viable 7.62mm cartridge was located on the bed [exhibit 25].

Several defects were noted on the floor just past the doorway into the room. Several deformed bullet fragments were later recovered from this area [exhibits 26 – 31]. Above these defects an area on the ceiling was examined. There was a hole and some red, blood-like high velocity spatter on the ceiling tiles. A deformed bullet [exhibit 32] was later recovered by SIU forensic investigators.

The primary responding officers’ vehicles had been moved from their original positions in front of the involved residence to allow for the attendance of EMS personnel and equipment. As a result, no photographs of the police vehicles were made; however, they were visually inspected by SIU forensic investigators and found to have no ballistic defects.

When SIU forensic investigators returned to the residence, a copper jacket bullet fragment [exhibit 33] was located on the floor inside the closet behind the open main front door. A swab [exhibit 34] was taken of the basement ceiling. SIU forensic investigators located another projectile [exhibit 35] and removed it from the door frame at the bottom of the stairs.

On October 14, 2022, SIU forensic investigators and the SIU lead investigator attended the post-mortem examination of the Complainant.

Following the post-mortem examination, the SIU forensic investigators returned to the involved dwelling and located a bullet fragment underneath the kitchen cupboard.

SIU forensic investigators photographed and made measurements of the scene, and created scene drawings.

Scene Diagrams



Physical Evidence

SIU forensic investigators collected, photographed, and indexed 85 relevant exhibits, including: police uniform components/clothing and equipment worn by the SO, Officer #1 and Officer #2; police firearms, ammunition, and projectiles and fragments thereof; biological specimens; one broken knife of indeterminate ownership; 11 empty 7.62x39mm rifle cartridges; a high velocity bullet fragment; and, clothing worn by the Complainant at the time of the incident.
The firearm discharged by the SO was a .40 calibre semi-automatic Glock pistol. It was recovered with one round in the chamber and a magazine containing 14 rounds of ammunition. A magazine found in the SO’s uniform pants pocket contained one round. A third magazine belonging to the SO held 14 rounds of ammunition. The maximum capacity for each magazine was 15 rounds.

Figure 1 – The SO’s Glock

Forensic Evidence

The SIU submitted 36 exhibits, including ammunition and ammunition components, and the SO’s police-issue pistol and spare magazine, to the Centre of Forensic Sciences (CFS) for examination. The results of the CFS examinations of these exhibits have yet to be received.

Biological specimens collected from the Complainant during the post-mortem examination were submitted directly by the Ontario Forensic Pathology Services to the CFS for examination and analyses. The results of the CFS examinations of the specimens, including toxicological analyses, have yet to be received by the SIU.

The SKS semi-automatic rifle was, in consultation with the SIU, seized by the York Regional Police (YRP) and submitted by the YRP to the CFS for examination. It was further agreed that the results of the examination would be shared with the SIU. Those results have yet to be received.

Figure 2 – The Complainant’s SKS semi-automatic rifle

Video/Audio/Photographic Evidence

The SIU collected video footage of relevance to the incident from Residence #1 and from CW #1’s cellular telephone. Video footage obtained by the YRP secondary to its parallel homicide investigation was reviewed by the SIU; however, none of the footage advanced the SIU’s investigation of the interaction between the Complainant and the SO, Officer #1 and Officer #2.

Video Footage from Residence #1

Three video files were obtained by the SIU from Residence #1. The first of the recordings depicted a SSPS cruiser [believed to be operated by Officer #2] turning onto the Complainant’s street at approximately 8:45:53 p.m. The second video file recorded multiple gunshots heard of varying volume. The third recording depicted two SSPS cruisers with emergency lights and sirens operating [believed to be operated by WO #2 and WO #3] turning onto the Complainant’s street at approximately 8:52:58 p.m., four minutes and 31 seconds after the SO, using his portable police radio at 8:48:27 p.m., announced, “Shots fired!”

Barrie Police Service (BPS) Body-worn Camera (BWC) Footage

BWC footage was obtained from six BPS officers, including Officer #3. These police officers arrived after the discharge of firearms. Only the BWC footage of Officer #3 was of probative value for the purpose of the investigation. It is summarized below.

Officer #3’s BWC with audio commenced recording at 8:50 p.m., October 11, 2022. At 9:00 p.m., Officer #3 arrived at the Complainant’s residence. Once at the front door, Officer #3 was told that a man [now known to be the Complainant] was handcuffed and alone in the basement. Officer #3 was asked to clear the basement, which was in darkness. Officer #2 was on the front veranda, and Officer #1 was inside the house at the front door. Lifesaving measures were being performed on both of them.

The Complainant was on the basement floor on his right side with his hands handcuffed behind his back. Officer #3 was heard telling police officers who came to the basement that the Complainant had no pulse. Another BPS officer, Officer #4, arrived in the basement, took a position by the wall near the steps, and covered the Complainant with his firearm. The Complainant’s firearm [now known to be the SKS semi-automatic rifle] was a distance away, towards the back of the room.

Once the basement was cleared, that is, checked for persons other than police officers, Officer #3 removed a wallet from the Complainant’s left pants pocket.

Until Officer #1 and Officer #2 were removed from the involved residence and transported to the hospital, numerous police officers came into the basement area.

At 9:10 p.m., two uniformed police officers from the SSPS came into the basement. The male police officer got onto his hands and knees, and inspected the Complainant’s face. He put a pair of gloves on and did a further inspection. There was a discussion with Officer #3 and Officer #4 about a hole in the ceiling, the Complainant having shot himself, shots having been fired from upstairs, and the damaged wooden floor. Officer #3 was heard advising that he and Officer #4 would take control of scene security within the residence.

At 9:11 p.m., a SSPS officer [believed to be the SO] stepped back onto the steps leading to the main floor. The SO was heard saying he could not get out at the moment “right now”, and, “These guys [meaning Officer #1 and Officer #2] are a priority right now.” At 9:12 p.m., the SO stated, “Sergeant, [2] I’m coming out now,” and he continued to the main floor to leave through the back entrance.

A member of the South Simcoe Fire Department and two paramedics entered the basement and viewed the Complainant. Again, Officer #3 spoke of no pulse when he arrived in the basement. EMS personnel removed Officer #1 from the residence to an ambulance.

At 9:22 p.m., Officer #3 and Officer #4 went to the landing and the steps to the upper floor.

CW #3 and CW #4 were on the upper level, waiting to learn when they could leave their home. Officer #3 disclosed that the Complainant had worn a vest.

At 9:38 p.m., a SSPS ERU member arrived to assist with scene security.

At 9:41 p.m., Officer #3 advised CW #4 and CW #3 that both the SIU and the YRP were involved, and that they should pack a bag.

Between 10:15 p.m. and 10:17 p.m., CW #4 and CW #3 left the involved residence.

At 10:26 p.m., Officer #3 gave the Complainant’s wallet to a SSPS Detective.

At 10:27 p.m., Officer #3 and Officer #4, and the ERU officer, left the involved residence.

Communications Recordings – SSPS Non-emergency Line

The following is a summary of the recordings.

On October 11, 2022, at 7:55 p.m., [3] CW #3 called the non-emergency number for the SSPS. As the automated service played, CW #3 was recorded, saying, “You think you’re smart, eh,” and, “He’s going out for sure, forever and he’ll not get back in!”

Indiscernible words were heard in the background, but CW #3 was heard speaking of her eyeglasses being broken. A man [now known to be CW #4] stated that he would drive him [meaning the Complainant]. CW #3 stated, “Watch, watch!”

A remark [believed to be spoken by the Complainant] was heard in the background: “You are really flipped.”

The communications operator came on the line and CW #3 asked for the police to attend the residence. She spoke of a call for police in the summer that involved the Complainant, and that the SSPS had come to throw him out. At the time of the call, the Complainant was downstairs, and he knew the SSPS had been called.

When asked by the communications operator, “Sooo, is there any weapons involved or?” CW #3 interrupted the communications operator preventing her from finishing her question, saying, “No…no,” at which time the communications operator simultaneously stated, “Okay.”

CW #3 went on to report that the Complainant had been arguing with her and that he had a temper. She said he grabbed her glasses from her face and broke them, and that he put a hole in the wall. CW #3 next told the communications operator, “I want him removed out of my house.”

When the communications operator asked CW #3 for his name, CW #3 provided the Complainant’s name and stated, “You have his name.” [4]

The communications operator asked CW #3 if the Complainant had been drinking or using any drugs. CW #3 replied, “No, not that I know of.” The communications operator asked a second time regarding any weapons, and again CW #3 responded, “Nope,” and, when asked, told the communications operator that he was not on any medication for anything, adding, “I just want him removed, he can get out of this house.”

Indiscernible voices were heard in the background as the communications operator asked CW #3 if there was anyone else in the house. CW #3 relayed that her husband, CW #4, was the only other person in the house. She provided the communications operator her telephone number and date of birth. The communications operator asked CW #3 to call back if anything changed, and the call was terminated.

Communications Recordings – SSPS

Radio Transmissions

The following is a summary of the SSPS radio transmissions in connection with the incident.

At about 8:33 p.m., Officer #2 transmitted, “[D]ispatch.” The police dispatcher responded, “Go ahead.” Officer #2 transmitted, “I’m en route to that domestic. Just to confirm, other than the firearms issue, that male is 10-60?” The police dispatcher responded, “That’s 10-4.”

At about 8:47:30 p.m., the SO screamed, “Shots fired, shots fired, we need help now!”

At about 8:47:41 p.m., the SO screamed, “Officers down, officers down, we need backup now!” The police dispatcher responded, “All units copy. Officers down.” The SO screamed again, “I’ve got two officers down, I need backup right now, I need backup!” WO #2 transmitted, “[O]n [street name]?” The SO was heard shouting “… gun down!” followed by the police dispatcher responding, “10-4 we’re calling Barrie.”

At about 8:48:29 p.m., the police dispatcher called the BPS and, for one minute and 45 seconds, relayed what little information she had available at that time.

At about 8:48:30 p.m., the SO transmitted from inside the Complainant’s residence. His transmission was unclear, but he was apparently indicating where Officer #2 and Officer #1 were in the doorway, that he was “on top”, and that other officers should come “straight to the basement”.

At about 8:48:44 p.m., the police dispatcher transmitted, “I copy – suspect in basement?” The SO responded, “Yes, 10-4, we need probably three crews, I can’t get to the officers right now.”

At about 8:49:04 p.m., the SO transmitted, “[H]eads up, there’s an exit from the basement to the backyard. I know that there’s officers outside there right now.” The police dispatcher responded, “10-4.” Then, the SO transmitted, “[S]uspect’s down. I think I sh, I got him.” The police dispatcher responded, “[Y]ou have the suspect?”

At about 8:50:07 p.m., the SO urgently transmitted, “Suspect’s down, I need, I need ambulance right away.” The police dispatcher responded, “10-4.”

The remaining radio transmissions pertained to the deployment of emergency medical personnel and police officers to the scene.

Materials Obtained from Police Service

Upon request, the SIU received the following materials from BPS, SSPS and YRP between October 12, 2022, and November 4, 2022:
  • YRP audio-video recordings of civilian interviews;
  • BPS Officer List;
  • BPS BWC footage;
  • Video footage – Residence #1;
  • Video footage – Business #1;
  • Video footage – Business #2;
  • SSPS and YRP communications recordings;
  • SSPS CAD Reports;
  • Canadian Police Information Centre (CPIC) Reports via YRP (x5);
  • Driver Record for CW #3 via YRP;
  • SSPS Notes-WO #2;
  • SSPS Notes-WO #1;
  • SSPS Notes-WO #3;
  • Occurrence Reports;
  • Ontario Provincial Police mugshot;
  • SSPS Procedure - Domestic Complaints;
  • SSPS Procedure - Hostage-Armed and/or Barricaded Persons;
  • SSPS Procedure - Mentally Ill Persons;
  • SSPS Procedure - Use of Force;
  • Royal Canadian Mounted Police Possession Acquisition License Application;
  • YRP scene photographs;
  • Seizure Report;
  • SSPS Civilian Witness List;
  • SSPS Use of Force Certificate – the SO;
  • YRP Warrant to Search;
  • YRP Witness Lists; and
  • YRP witness interviews.

Materials Obtained from Other Sources

The SIU obtained and reviewed the following records from other sources;
  • Canadian Forces National Investigation Service fingerprint records;
  • Canadian Forces Member's Personnel Record Resume; and
  • Video recordings from CW #1.

Incident Narrative

The evidence collected by the SIU, including interviews with civilian witnesses present at the time of the shooting, gives rise to the following scenario. As was his legal right, the SO chose not to interview with the SIU. He did authorize the release of his notes.

In the evening of October 11, 2022, SSPS officers were dispatched to a residence in the area of 25th Sideroad and 9 Line, Innisfil, following a call to police from the homeowner. The woman – CW #3 – had called to request that police attend the house to remove the Complainant. CW #3 reported that the Complainant had grabbed her eyeglasses from her face and broken them, and punched a hole in the wall. Asked whether the Complainant had been drinking and whether weapons were involved, CW #3 replied in the negative.

The Complainant lived in the home with family members – CW #3 and CW #4. Contrary to CW #3’s assertions in her call to police, the Complainant had, in fact, consumed alcohol. He also had access to firearms inside the home, including a SKS 7.62x39mm semi-automatic rifle, located in a gun safe in his basement bedroom.

The SO, and Officer #2 and Officer #1, each in separate cruisers, arrived at the address at about 8:45 p.m. The SO rang the doorbell and was invited inside by someone from within the home. The officer opened the storm door and main door, and stepped inside followed by Officer #1 and Officer #2. To the officers’ right as they entered the home was a flight of stairs to the basement, which was dark. To the left was a set of five stairs leading to the upstairs level.

The SO had just reached the upper step and met with a man – CW #4 – when he heard gunshots ring out. Looking back, the SO saw that Officer #1 and Officer #2 were each down with apparent gunshot wounds. He immediately drew his sidearm with his right hand, reached over the railing with it, and began shooting down the stairs. The officer fired 12 to 14 rounds [5] before pausing, removing the magazine from his gun and reloading a full one, and calling out, “Police.” Not hearing a response, the SO would eventually look down the stairs and see the Complainant. He was on his back in a pool of blood, a rifle in his hands. The time was about 8:47 p.m.

Armed with the SKS rifle, the Complainant had fired up the stairs 11 times on Officer #1 and Officer #2. Neither of the officers had their weapons drawn at the time. Shortly thereafter, still in the basement within a few metres of the foot of the stairs, the Complainant placed the muzzle of the rifle under his chin and fired the weapon. The round travelled through his head and upwards to the kitchen on the next floor, coming to rest in the cupboard underneath the sink.

Despite the lifesaving efforts by the SO and other first responders who would arrive at the residence, Officer #1 and Officer #2 succumbed to their injuries.

Cause of Death

The pathologist at autopsy was of the preliminary view that the Complainant’s death was attributable to a ‘submental gunshot wound to the head – contact range’.

Relevant Legislation

Section 34, Criminal Code -- Defence of person - Use or Threat of Force

34 (1) A person is not guilty of an offence if
(a) They believe on reasonable grounds that force is being used against them or another person or that a threat of force is being made against them or another person; 
(b) The act that constitutes the offence is committed for the purpose of defending or protecting themselves or the other person from that use or threat of force; and
(c) The act committed is reasonable in the circumstances.
(2) In determining whether the act committed is reasonable in the circumstances, the court shall consider the relevant circumstances of the person, the other parties and the act, including, but not limited to, the following factors:
(a) the nature of the force or threat;
(b) the extent to which the use of force was imminent and whether there were other means available to respond to the potential use of force;
(c) the person’s role in the incident;
(d) whether any party to the incident used or threatened to use a weapon; 
(e) the size, age, gender and physical capabilities of the parties to the incident;
(f) the nature, duration and history of any relationship between the parties to the incident, including any prior use or threat of force and the nature of that force or threat;
(f.1) any history of interaction or communication between the parties to the incident;
(g) the nature and proportionality of the person’s response to the use or threat of force; and 
(h) whether the act committed was in response to a use or threat of force that the person knew was lawful.
(3) Subsection (1) does not apply if the force is used or threatened by another person for the purpose of doing something that they are required or authorized by law to do in the administration or enforcement of the law, unless the person who commits the act that constitutes the offence believes on reasonable grounds that the other person is acting unlawfully.

Analysis and Director's Decision

On October 11, 2022, the Complainant passed away having suffered a self-inflicted gunshot wound in Innisfil, Ontario. As his death occurred in the context of an exchange of gunfire involving a SSPS officer, the SIU was notified of the matter and initiated an investigation. The officer – the SO – was identified as the subject official. The investigation is now concluded. On my assessment of the evidence, there are no reasonable grounds to believe that the SO committed a criminal offence in connection with the Complainant’s death.

There is nothing in the evidence to indicate that the SO committed a criminal offence throughout the sequence of events culminating in the Complainant’s death. With respect to the shots he fired in the direction of the Complainant, these, I am satisfied, were legally justified pursuant to section 34 of the Criminal Code. The section provides that force used in self-defence or in defence of others from a reasonably apprehended attack is authorized if it is reasonable in the circumstances. While wearing a ballistic vest, the Complainant had waited in ambush for the police officers to arrive at his residence and then fired at the officers multiple times, mortally wounding Officer #1 and Officer #2. In the circumstances, the officers were clearly under attack at the time that the SO drew his weapon and returned fire down the stairs into the basement. His decision to do so was commensurate with the exigencies at hand. It was imperative in the moment that the SO do what he could to immediately deter the Complainant from continuing to fire his weapon, and the officer’s gun was the only weapon at his disposal capable of doing that. And though the officer was firing blind to an extent, he did have reason to believe that his rounds were being directed at the Complainant; after he was shot and on the floor, and before he lapsed into unconsciousness, Officer #1 managed to point in the direction from which the Complainant’s shots had been fired – down the stairs to the basement. Regrettably, given the speed with which events unfolded, the damage had been done to Officer #1 and Officer #2 before the SO could react. That said, the force used by the officer – which did not kill the Complainant but appears to have caused a graze wound to his lower left leg - might well have saved his own life, as well as those of the Complainant’s family members, who were nearby at the time.

In the result, as I am satisfied that the SO comported himself lawfully throughout his engagement with the Complainant that ended in the Complainant’s self-inflicted gunshot wound and death, there is no basis for proceeding with criminal charges in this case. The file is closed.

Date: February 8, 2023

Electronically approved by

Joseph Martino
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]
  • 2) SSPS WO #1. [Back to text]
  • 3) From the computer-aided dispatch (CAD) report. [Back to text]
  • 4) A reference to prior occurrences. [Back to text]
  • 5) This range is derived from a count of the empty cartridge cases recovered from the scene, the maximum number of rounds that his pistol could have been loaded with at the time of the incident, and a count of the ammunition remaining in the officer’s firearm and magazines when examined by the SIU. [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.