SIU Director’s Report - Case # 23-PVI-251
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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 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.
- 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 21-year-old man (the “Complainant”).
Notification of the SIU On July 2, 2023, at 5:30 p.m., the Ontario Provincial Police (OPP) Middlesex Detachment contacted the SIU with the following information.
At 10:09 a.m., that same date, a member of the community reported to the police that a grey pick-up truck had travelled into a ditch on Fairgrounds Road on the Oneida Nation of the Thames First Nation (ONTFN) territory. An initial search by the OPP Subject Official (SO) and Oneida Police Service Officer #1 failed to locate the vehicle. It was subsequently observed at a distance, but no effort was made to stop the vehicle given its speed. At 11:14 a.m., the pick-up truck was located by Officer #1 as it sped along several sideroads within the ONTFN territory, and he followed it. As the SO was nearby, he monitored the situation via his police radio.  Officer #1 followed the pick-up truck at a high rate of speed and reported his position. With this information, the SO positioned himself on Jubilee Road, near Chippewa Road, where he deployed a Tire Deflation Device (TDD). This location was on Chippewas of the Thames First Nation (CTFN) territory. The pick-up truck travelled towards the SO at a high rate of speed and swerved to avoid the TDD, travelling into a ditch and then a tree. The driver – the Complainant – subsequently fled the vehicle, and ran into an area of heavy brush. The OPP initiated a ground search that involved a police dog handler [WO #1] and an Emergency Response Team (ERT) member [WO #2]. At 1:21 p.m., WO #1, WO #2 and the SO located the Complainant and he was arrested. The pick-up truck was determined to be stolen. The Complainant was transported to the London Health Sciences - Victoria Hospital (LHSVH) for medical examination, and diagnosed with a brain bleed.
The TeamDate and time team dispatched: 07/02/2023 at 6:41 p.m.
Date and time SIU arrived on scene: 07/02/2023 at 8:25 p.m.
Number of SIU Investigators assigned: 4
Number of SIU Forensic Investigators assigned: 0
Number of SIU Collision Reconstructionists assigned: 1
Affected Person (aka “Complainant”):21-year-old male; interviewed; medical records obtained and reviewed
The Complainant was interviewed on July 3, 2023.
Civilian Witness (CW)CW Interviewed
The civilian witness was interviewed on July 2, 2023.
Subject Official (SO)SO Interviewed, but declined to submit notes, as is the subject official’s legal right
The subject official was interviewed on July 28, 2023.
Witness Officials (WO)WO #1 Interviewed
WO #2 Interviewed
WO #3 Not interviewed; notes reviewed and interview deemed not necessary
WO #4 Interviewed
The witness officials were interviewed between July 12, 2023, and August 25, 2023.
Investigative DelayThere was a substantial delay related to identifying, confirming, and obtaining cooperation from the Oneida Police Service, which included Officer #1 and Officer #2. At no time did any police officer or employee of the Oneida Police Service acknowledge or respond to requests sent to them by the SIU.
The Scene The events in question transpired on and around the intersection of Jubilee Road and Chippewa Road, Middlesex County.
The intersection was within the territory of the CTFN, whose Chief denied permission for SIU investigators to enter onto territory land to investigate the incident. Accordingly, the scene examination was conducted by the OPP.
Figure 1 – Google Maps aerial view of the intersection of Chippewa Road
and Jubilee Road
Figure 2 – The Chevrolet Silverado in the ditch
Crash Data Recorder (CDR) DataOn July 5, 2023, the SIU collision reconstructionist recovered the onboard CDR from the Chevrolet Silverado pick-up truck involved in the collision.
The SIU collision reconstructionist attended “A Annex Towing” in London, a secure storage facility. The pick-up truck revealed heavy damage to the front driver’s corner. The damage was consistent with a tree impact.
Figure 3 – Front end damage to the Chevrolet Silverado
On July 7, 2023, the CDR data were downloaded, revealing an airbag deployment on July 2, 2023. In addition, the data revealed:
- At six seconds before impact, the pick-up was 220 metres north of the point of impact travelling south on Jubilee Road at a speed of 158 km/h.
- At five seconds before impact, the pick-up was 175 metres from impact travelling 160 km/h as it entered the intersection at Chippewa Road. The vehicle did not stop or slow.
- At four seconds before impact, the pick-up was 132 metres from impact travelling at 153 km/h.
- At three seconds before impact, the pick-up was 90 metres from impact. The driver might have started to brake as the vehicle slowed to 146 km/h.
- At two seconds before impact, the pick-up was 50 metres from impact. The driver braked and the pick-up truck’s speed slowed to 122 km/h.
- At one second before impact, the vehicle was 23 metres from impact. The driver braked and the vehicle started to leave the road. The speed was 93 km/h. It was at this time that the non-deployment event occurred. This means that a relatively minor impact was experienced by the vehicle, enough to ‘wake up’ the airbag module, but not severe enough to warrant a deployment. A small tree/bush impact would be enough to cause the non-deployment event, consistent with the vehicle having left the road.
- On impact, the pick-up left the east side of the road and struck a tree with the driver side front corner. Assuming full braking continued for the entire one second pre-impact, the pick-up truck’s speed at impact was about 60 km/h. This speed is consistent with the impact severity recorded by the CDR.
Figure 4 – Location on Google Maps of the Chevrolet Silverado’s location in the seconds immediately prior to impact
Global Positioning System (GPS) DataOn July 5, 2023, the SIU received the GPS data for the SO’s OPP cruiser [Chevrolet Tahoe SUV].
The data captured the SO’s cruiser as it was driven in the area of Fairgrounds Road on July 2, 2023, at about 10:21 a.m. The data also revealed his cruiser as it travelled throughout the ONTFN and CTCN Territories.
At about 11:00 a.m., the SO was mobile near Jubilee Road and Chippewa Road.
At about 11:14 a.m., the SO’s cruiser was stopped at the intersection, remaining so for several hours afterwards.
Requests were made for GPS/AVL for Officer #1’s cruiser and other documentation; however, the Oneida Police Service failed to respond to any SIU correspondence.
Video/Audio/Photographic Evidence 
Police Radio TransmissionsOn July 6 and 7, 2023, the SIU received copies of the radio transmissions from the OPP relating to a report of a pick-up truck that had gone into the ditch on Fairgrounds Road on July 2, 2023. Of note, the OPP and Oneida Police Service share a common radio channel.
On July 2, 2023, starting at about 10:10 a.m., Officer #1 and the SO were informed that a member of the community had reported a pick-up truck [now known to be a Chevrolet Silverado] crashed into a ditch on Fairgrounds Road. Upon the officers’ arrival, the pick-up truck was gone, though it was subsequently seen in the distance as it travelled erratically and at a high rate of speed. Both officers loosely patrolled the area for the pick-up truck, but it was not located.
Officer #1 later reported observing the pick-up truck on Oneida Road heading towards Hazel Road and travelled at a high rate of speed. He was asked by the communications officer if his roof lights and siren were activated, and he stated, “No.” The SO then reported that he was situated on Jubilee Road. The communications sergeant [WO #4] confirmed that there was no attempt to stop the pick-up truck.
Officer #1 advised that the pick-up truck had turned onto Jubilee Road from Muncey Road, and the SO stated that he would deploy a spike belt. As the pick-up truck was at Jubilee Road and Mount Elgin Drive, Officer #1 reported that he had lost sight of the vehicle. A short time later, the SO reported that the pick-up truck had crashed into a ditch and then a tree at his location - Jubilee Road and Chippewa Road. The driver - the Complainant - had attempted to evade the spike belt that the officer had deployed. The Complainant exited the vehicle and fled into a forested area.
There was fresh blood found on an airbag within the pick-up truck.
The scene was contained, and the officers waited for the arrival of an OPP Canine Unit
[WO #1] and ERT officer [WO #2].
At 1:02 p.m., a dog track began. At 1:20 p.m., WO #2 reported that the Complainant had been located in a bush and arrested.
EMS was called because the Complainant had facial injuries from the accident. He was later taken to the LHSVH.
Body-worn Camera (BWC) FootageOn July 10, 2023, the SIU obtained a copy WO #3’s BWC footage. The footage was of limited value to the SIU. It did not capture the events in question.
Materials Obtained from Police Service Upon request, the SIU received the following materials from the OPP between July 2 and 30, 2023:
- OPP General Occurrence/Supplementary Report;
- Motor Vehicle Collision Report;
- Communications recordings;
- GPS data for the SO’s OPP cruiser;
- List of involved Oneida Police Service officers;
- List of involved OPP officers involved;
- Scenes of Crime Officer photographs and video recordings;
- BWC footage;
- In-car camera footage;
- Photographs taken by WO #1 during her interaction with the Complainant;
- Notebook entries – WO #1;
- Notebook entries – WO #2;
- Notebook entries – WO #3;
- OPP policy – Suspect Apprehension Pursuits/Tire Deflation Devices;
- OPP policy – K9 / Emergency Response Teams;
- OPP policy – Use of Force; and
- OPP policy – General Policing on Indigenous Lands.
Materials Obtained from Other SourcesThe SIU obtained the following records from other sources between July 12, 2023, and August 14, 2023:
- The Complainant’s medical records from the LHSVH; and
- Ambulance Call Report – Oneida Nation Emergency Medical Services.
In the morning of July 2, 2023, the SO and Officer #1, the latter of the Oneida Police Service, arrived in the area of 1843 Fairgrounds Road, Southwold, to investigate a report of a pick-up truck that had crashed into a ditch. The vehicle had left by the time of their arrival, but they were able to spot in distance. It was travelling north on Fairgrounds Road at speed.
Less than an hour later, Officer #1 radioed that he had located the pick-up truck and was following it as it travelled south on Hazel Road, west on Muncey Road, and finally south on Jubilee Road.
The SO heard Officer #1’s radio broadcasts. As he was in the area of Jubilee Road and Chippewa Road, south of the pursuit, the SO decided he would deploy a spike belt across the southern lane at the intersection.
The Complainant was operating the pick-up truck – a stolen Chevrolet Silverado. Travelling south on Jubilee Road towards Chippewa Road at speeds in excess of 150 km/h, the Complainant noticed the spike belt in front of him and steered to the left to avoid it, losing control of the vehicle in the process. It entered the east side ditch south of Chippewa Road and struck a tree head-on. The Complainant exited the vehicle and fled into a forested area.
The SO and Officer #1 convened in the area of the intersection and waited for the arrival of an ERT officer and a canine unit to assist in the search of the Complainant.
Shortly after 1:00 p.m., WO #1 and her dog commenced their search. ERT officer, WO #2, accompanied WO #1. Within minutes, the Complainant was located and bitten by the dog in the left leg. WO #1 removed the dog and the Complainant was arrested without further incident.
The Complainant was transported to hospital and diagnosed with swelling to his face and a fractured nose.
Sections 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,
Analysis and Director's Decision
The offence that arises for consideration is criminal negligence causing bodily harm contrary to section 221 of the Criminal Code. The offence is reserved for serious cases of neglect that demonstrate a wanton or reckless disregard for the lives or safety of other persons. It is predicated, in part, on conduct that amounts to a marked and substantial departure from the level of care that a reasonable person would have exercised in the circumstances. In the instant case, the question is whether there was a want of care on the part of the SO, sufficiently egregious to attract criminal sanction, that caused or contributed to the Complainant’s injuries. In my view, there was not.
I am satisfied the SO was in the lawful discharge of his duties when he attempted to stop the pick-up truck with the use of a spike belt. By that time, he and Officer #1, who was in pursuit of the truck south on Jubilee Road, had cause to believe that the Complainant had driven dangerously given his speeds, his reported disregard for at least one stop sign, and the fact that he had crashed the vehicle in a ditch on Fairgrounds Road.
I am also satisfied that the SO comported himself with due care and regard for public safety when he deployed the spike belt. Though the use of the tool carries the risk of a loss of control by the effected vehicle, not doing something to stop the pick-up truck was also associated with a danger on the roadways given what the officer knew of the Complainant’s driving habits in the hour before. Nor does it appear that the environmental factors were prohibitive at the time. There is no indication, for example, of poor weather or traffic on the roadway that was imperilled. In the circumstances, I am satisfied that the use of the spike belt amounted to a calculated and reasonable risk. Had it worked, the Complainant’s tires would have been punctured resulting in a controlled deceleration and eventual stop. As it turned out, the Complainant veered to avoid the spike belt, resulting in his loss of control and the collision that broke his nose.
In the result, as I am not satisfied on the aforementioned-record that the SO transgressed the limits of care prescribed by the criminal law when he deployed the spike belt, there is no basis for proceeding with criminal charges in this case. The file is closed.
Date: October 30, 2023
Electronically approved by
Special Investigations Unit
- 1) The information in this section reflects the information received by the SIU at the time of notification and does not necessarily reflect the SIU’s finding of facts following its investigation. [Back to text]
- 2) The OPP and Oneida Police Service shared a common radio channel for policing purposes. [Back to text]
- 3) 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.