SIU Director’s Report - Case # 23-TVI-416
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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 27-year-old man (the “Complainant”).
Notification of the SIU On October 12, 2023, at 12:08 a.m., the Toronto Police Service (TPS) contacted the SIU with the following information.
On October 11, 2023, at 2:47 p.m., TPS Traffic Services (TS) motorcycle officer, the Subject Official (SO), reported to police dispatch he had come across a personal injury collision near Judson Street and Islington Avenue. A man [later identified as the Complainant] had been operating an electric bicycle,  entered the intersection on a red light, and was struck by a motor vehicle. The SO requested Emergency Medical Services (EMS), who transported the Complainant to St. Michael’s Hospital (SMH) where he was diagnosed with fractures to his femur, foot and neck, and admitted to hospital pending surgery.
The collision was investigated by TPS TS. Photographs of the scene were taken before it was cleared.
At 7:30 p.m., after completing his scheduled shift, the SO contacted his supervisor, Witness Official (WO) #2, and reported that prior to discovering the collision, he had attempted to stop the Complainant while he was operating the e-bike. It was unclear where or why the SO tried to stop the Complainant, but it was reported the Complainant was not wearing a helmet and the e-bike was un-plated. It was shortly thereafter the SO discovered the collision. It was not believed the SO called-in the attempted traffic stop to police dispatch.
The TeamDate and time team dispatched: 2023/10/12 at 6:13 a.m.
Date and time SIU arrived on scene: 2023/10/12 at 8:33 a.m.
Number of SIU Investigators assigned: 4
Number of SIU Forensic Investigators assigned: 1
Number of SIU Reconstructionists assigned: 1
Affected Person (aka “Complainant”):27-year-old male; declined interview; medical records obtained and reviewed
Civilian Witnesses (CW)CW #1 Not interviewed; declined
CW #2 Not interviewed; declined
CW #3 Interviewed
CW #4 Not interviewed; declined
The civilian witness was interviewed on October 16, 2023.
Subject Official (SO)SO Declined interview and to provide notes, as is the subject official’s legal right
Witness Officials (WO)WO #1 Interviewed
WO #2 Interviewed
The witness officials were interviewed between November 8 and 22, 2023.
The Scene The events in question transpired on a stretch of roadway beginning on Evans Avenue a distance east of Horner Avenue, travelling west and continuing south on Horner Avenue and then east on Judson Street, and ending at the scene of a motor vehicle collision at the intersection of Judson Street and Islington Avenue, Toronto.
The following rendering, including some measurements, was made by WO #1 on her Motor Vehicle Collision Report (MVCR). It depicted where an e-bike and CW #4’s vehicle were located, and where the Complainant landed in the northbound lanes, post-collision.
Physical Evidence The Islington Avenue and Judson Street intersection was a major traffic signal-controlled intersection in a predominantly industrial area of south Etobicoke. Islington Avenue ran (predominantly) north and south and Judson Street (predominantly) east and west.
The southbound lanes of Islington Avenue, north of the intersection, were paved and marked for two lanes of through-traffic and, at the intersection, a dedicated south-to-east left-hand-turn lane. Those lanes were separated from the northbound lanes by a concrete median. The roadway was abutted to the west by a curb of common height, a grass boulevard, and a sidewalk of common width. Those abutments led to a lawn-covered area on the property of a transportation company.
The eastbound lanes of Judson Street, west of the intersection, were paved and separated from the westbound lanes by a concrete median. The eastbound roadway provided one eastbound lane and a dedicated east-to-north left-hand-turn lane. That section of roadway was separated from the property occupying the southwest corner of the intersection by a curb and sidewalk of common width.
South of the intersection, the southbound roadway was marked for two lanes of traffic and separated from the property that occupied the southwest corner by a paved section of roadway marked as prohibited for travel by painted road markings, a curb of common height, a sidewalk of larger than common width, and a concrete wall topped with a metal railing. The south and northbound lanes were separated by a concrete median.
The intersection was marked with crosswalk lines in all four directions.
The first of the images below, all captured by the TPS on October 11, 2023, looked southbound, from the southbound lanes of Islington Avenue, north of the intersection and showed the location the Complainant’s e-bike (marked by a horizontal red arrow inserted by author) and where CW #4’s vehicle stopped post-collision (marked by a vertical red arrow inserted by author).
Figure 1 – Photograph of the scene with the Complainant’s e-bike marked by a red horizontal arrow and CW #4’s vehicle marked by a red vertical arrow
The next picture captured the e-bike and debris field looking north from the southbound lanes of Islington Avenue, south of the intersection.
Figure 2 - Photograph of the scene showing the Complainant's e-bike and the debris field from the collision
The following image captured the damage CW #4’s car took from the impact. 
Figure 3 - CW #4's vehicle
On October 13, 2023, a SIU forensic investigator examined and photographed the TPS motorcycle the SO rode at the TPS TS building. The 2015 Harley Davidson was marked with a service vehicle identification number, and the graphics common to TPS motorcycles. It did not exhibit collision damage. Its emergency lighting system, horn, and siren functioned as designed.
Global Positioning System (GPS) DataAt 1:46:05 p.m., the police motorcycle was westbound on Evans Avenue, approaching Horner Avenue. It was slowing and travelling 55 km/h.
At 1:46:16 p.m., it was southbound on Horner Avenue, and had accelerated rapidly from the Evans Avenue intersection to 101 km/h.
At 1:46:20 p.m., it finished negotiating a left curve on Horner Avenue, and reached 105 km/h.
At 1:46:24 p.m., it neared 88 Horner Avenue, and slowed to 85 km/h.
At 1:46:31 p.m., it neared the intersection with Judson Street, and slowed to 68 km/h.
At 1:46:51 p.m., it was eastbound on Judson Street, after accelerating rapidly from the intersection with Horner Avenue, and was traveling about 103 km/h.
At 1:46:53 p.m., it continued eastbound still accelerating. It was travelled about 126 km/h at the time.
At 1:46:57 p.m., it still accelerated eastbound reaching a top recorded speed of 137 km/h, about 200 metres from the Islington Avenue and Judson Street intersection.
At 1:47:02 p.m., it slowed to about 93 km/h about 50 metres from the intersection.
At 1:47:08 p.m., it was established in the intersection with a recorded speed of 5 km/h.
SIU ReconstructionA SIU reconstructionist examined the available data and arrived at the following findings.
The collision occurred at the intersection of Judson Street and Islington Avenue; however, the area of interest included Horner Avenue and Judson Street to the west of the Islington Avenue intersection.
The area in question was primarily an industrial area with intermittent driveways to low-rise commercial buildings intersecting the local roads. Horner Avenue ran nominally north-south and was 4 lanes wide. The east side of Horner Avenue was bordered by a grass boulevard followed by a sidewalk. The speed limit was posted at 50 km/h.
Judson Street was also a two-lane road, running nominally east-west. Judson Street intersected Horner Avenue in a T-intersection. Traffic entering Judson Street from southbound Horner Avenue was uncontrolled (no stop sign or traffic lights), but there was a dedicated left-turn lane for left-turning traffic. The speed limit on Judson Street was 40 km/h. The north side of the road was bordered by a grass boulevard followed by a sidewalk.
Islington Avenue was a four-lane road that ran north-south. The intersection of Judson Street and Islington Avenue was a four-way traffic signal-controlled intersection. Raised concrete medians divided opposing traffic. The speed limit on Islington Avenue was 60 km/h.
Post-impact, the e-bike slid on the road for about 30 metres before coming to rest. Research into typical sliding friction of small motorcycles on asphalt concluded a friction range of between 0.40 to 0.65. Based on this range of friction, the post-impact speed of the e-bike was between 55 and 70 km/h. Given the assumed pre-impact trajectory of each vehicle, all of the post-impact southbound movement of the e-bike was due to the impact with the vehicle it struck. In other words, the vehicle it struck was likely travelling 55 to 70 km/h when it collided with the e-bike, based on where the e-bike came to rest. This speed range was consistent with the vehicle travelling at or near the speed limit of 60 km/h at the time of impact.
In terms of the e-bike’s impact speed, the angle between the right front corner impact and the centre of the roof header impact was about 30 degrees. This translated to the e-bike travelling between 32 and 40 km/h at impact.
The perpendicular nature of a camera that captured the police motorcycle and e-bike travelling south on Horner Avenue allowed for a reasonably accurate speed measurement. The e-bike’s speed in this video was estimated at an average of about 85 km/h. The motorcycle’s speed was estimated to be about 80 km/h.
A simulation of the movement of the police motorcycle in the minute or so prior to the collision involving the e-bike and another vehicle was completed based on the GPS data and incorporating the approximate movement of the e-bike in the 15 seconds before impact based on the security camera footage and the assumption that the e-bike’s maximum speed was 114 km/h.
The motorcycle was approximately 100 metres west of the intersection of Islington Avenue and Judson Street when the e-bike entered the Islington Avenue intersection and the collision occurred.
Video/Audio/Photographic Evidence 
Video Footage - Ourland Community Centre and Clutch Auto SalesVideos from the City of Toronto Ourland Community Centre, 18 Ourland Avenue, on the northeast corner of Islington Avenue and Judson Street, and Clutch Auto Sales, 223 Evans Avenue, did not capture information helpful to the investigation.
Video Footage - Cordeiro Roofing - Camera “Front S”Located at 88 Horner Avenue, the camera was oriented northbound towards a curve on Horner Avenue, north of the building. On October 11, 2023, starting at about 12:30:01 p.m., it captured light to moderate traffic in both directions.
Starting at about 1:44:53 p.m., an e-bike operated by the Complainant entered camera view travelling southbound in the southbound curb lane. A TPS motorcycle operated by the SO travelled next to and approximately one metre from the e-bike. The Complainant drove onto the driveway of the north parking lot at Cordeiro Roofing and continued southbound on the sidewalk on the west side of Horner Avenue, as the SO paralleled him in the curb lane. His motorcycle emergency lights were active. Both vehicles exited the image at 1:44:57 p.m. 
Video Footage - Cordeiro Roofing - Camera “Front N”The camera was oriented to face south along Horner Avenue.
Starting at about 1:44:56 p.m., the Complainant operated his e-bike into the camera’s view travelling southbound on the front lawn of the Cordeiro Roofing building, west of the sidewalk. A police motorcycle operated by the SO travelled southbound in the curb lane, parallel to the Complainant, with its emergency lighting active. There was no pedestrian traffic on the sidewalk. The Complainant drove to and then along a walkway that led to the south Cordeiro Roofing parking lot before continuing across the parking lot and onto a grass area between the sidewalk and the perimeter fencing of a neighbouring property. The e-bike briefly lost contact with the ground as the Complainant continued south. The SO drifted into the southbound passing lane of Horner Avenue, then returned to the curb lane. Just north of Judson Street, the Complainant turned east, crossed the sidewalk, and drove across Horner Avenue, with the SO south of him (south of the intersection). The Complainant then rode eastbound on Judson Street.
Starting at about 1:45:08 p.m., as the Complainant turned onto Judson Street, the SO executed a U-turn and maneuvered around a civilian vehicle that had stopped on Horner Avenue. The SO navigated to travel eastbound on Judson Street and appeared to accelerate. By 1:45:16 p.m., neither motorist was visible to the camera.
Video Footage - Cordeiro Roofing - Camera “South Gate”Starting at about 1:44:57 p.m., the SO’s motorcycle entered the camera view travelling southbound on Horner Avenue in the curb lane followed by the Complainant approximately two motorcycle-lengths behind him. The Complainant drove on the sidewalk and pulled ahead of the SO, who drifted into the southbound passing lane.
At 1:44:59 p.m., the e-bike exited camera view and, at 1:45:00 p.m., the police motorcycle did too.
Communications Recordings and Computer-assisted Dispatch (CAD) ReportRecorded on October 11, 2023, police radio and telephone communications began at 1:47 p.m., when the SO broadcast his request for an ambulance to be rushed to Judson Street and Islington Avenue for a man - the Complainant - hit by a car.
Starting at about 1:50 p.m., the communications centre telephoned EMS and made that request telling them blood was coming from the man’s mouth, and that he was unconscious and had flown through air. One minute later, the communications centre made a police radio request for police officers to block traffic in the area.
At 1:55 p.m., a CAD entry recorded that the Complainant had been thrown six metres.
At 1:59 p.m., a police officer broadcast the ambulance had arrived and was assessing the Complainant.
At 2:15 p.m., a broadcast was made that the ambulance run to hospital had begun.
A 2:28 p.m., a broadcast marked the ambulance’s arrival at SMH.
At 2:52 p.m., an entry recorded the Complainant had not been wearing a helmet and his e-bike had been travelling at least 50 km/h.
At 3:14 p.m., the e-bike was described as fully electric, un-plated, and with no pedals.
At 4:55 p.m., a broadcast indicated that the Complainant’s injuries were non-life-threatening.
At 6:02 p.m., a broadcast indicated that the Complainant had a fractured femur, broken foot and cracked neck, and was to undergo surgery that night.
At 6:03 p.m., the CAD recorded information from a witness indicating that the Complainant had disobeyed a traffic light and was struck by a southbound vehicle travelling on a green light.
Body-worn Camera (BWC) Footage - SOOn October 11, 2023, the SO’s BWC recorded approximately 40 minutes of footage beginning at about 1:47 p.m. When activated, it captured the SO on Islington Avenue, south of Judson Street. His motorcycle was parked at the intersection with its emergency lights activated. An injured man - the Complainant - was lying on the road. The SO walked back to his motorcycle, retrieved his hand-held police radio, walked to the Complainant, and asked if he could hear his voice. The Complainant did not respond.
Starting at about 1:48 p.m., the SO requested an ambulance be rushed, and told the Complainant not to move. The Complainant tried to get up. The SO broadcast a request for more police officers.
Other police officers arrived beginning at 1:50 p.m. and started traffic control.
At 1:52 p.m., the SO broadcast another request to rush the ambulance. Toronto firefighters arrived at 1:54 p.m. and examined the Complainant.
At 1:55 p.m., the SO talked to the driver of the car that collided with the Complainant - CW #4.
An ambulance arrived at 1:57 p.m., and a man [believed to be CW #3] explained to paramedics that the collision caused the Complainant to fly through the air.
Starting at about 2:01 p.m., CW #3 asked the SO, “Did you see it?” The SO said, “I came after the fact, but I did see the bike explode.” CW #3 said, “You came pretty fast,” and the SO replied, “My training facility is just on the other side.” CW #3 said, “Cars were making left turns, I saw him in the air. He had a mask on so I took it down so he could breathe. He flew up high.”
At 2:15 p.m., the ambulance left.
WO #1 asked the SO, “Did you see it?” and he responded, “No I came up on it, I saw similar bikes up there but don’t know who's who and what's what, just going to the training pad.”
At 2:20 p.m., the SO walked to CW #4’s car and his camera recorded the damaged front-end and windshield.
At 2:25 p.m., another police officer asked the SO if he saw it and he responded, “I came after the fact.”
At 2:27 p.m., after asking WO #2 if they should turn their BWCs off, the SO turned off his BWC.
BWC Footage – WO #2On October 11, 2023, WO #2’s BWC recorded approximately 140 minutes of footage. Beginning at about 2:12 p.m., WO #2 was captured on Islington Avenue, south of Judson Street, talking to other police officers near an ambulance. The audio went live at 2:13 p.m. when he asked the SO if witnesses had made statements. He then made role delegations to other police officers.
At 2:15 p.m., WO #2 made a police radio broadcast that the ambulance had left for hospital.
Starting at about 2:25 p.m., WO #2 spoke to WO #1, who briefed him on her understanding of the collision’s dynamics based off her conversations with witnesses. She told him she did not suspect the driver of the vehicle that collided with the Complainant was under the influence of alcohol or drugs.
At 2:27 p.m., the SO asked WO #2 if their BWCs should be turned off. He agreed and turned his camera off. He re-activated it at 2:45 p.m.
At 2:52 p.m., WO #2 made a police radio broadcast that CW #4 was probably doing the speed limit.
At 3:01 p.m., WO #2 spoke to the SO, who said, “I’m starting to wonder if this wasn’t the two motorcycles I saw. It was at the other intersection and they fuckin’ flew by so I made the right and I went in that direction and there was nobody there. So, I went down Evans. Anyways I made the left there and I came down here and boom, I find him.”
At 3:14 p.m., WO #2 and WO #1 discussed the specifications of the e-bike.
At 3:20 p.m., WO #2 muted his audio and took a one-minute telephone call.
At 3:29 p.m., WO #2 walked to CW #4’s car and made notes.
At 3:34 p.m., WO #2 drove his motorcycle closer to the intersection and assisted with traffic control. He muted his audio and took a 14-minute telephone call at 3:59 p.m.
Starting at about 4:23 p.m., WO #2 was approached by CW #4, who said, “The SO was telling me he was coming along on Evans, and he sees two guys on bikes that were speeding and that’s why he came down this way and I was talking to the tow truck driver, and he said that one of the guys drove by, were speeding away. So, one guy went one way, and the other guy went the other way. That’s why he booked it across the red light he was trying to get away. The SO was right behind him. As soon as he hit him.”
At 4:40 p.m., WO #2’s BWC camera was turned off. It was re-activated at 4:48 p.m. and recorded until 4:50 p.m., when it was turned off again. It was re-activated at 5:01 p.m. near the e-bike as he assisted another police officer examine the bike before the recording concluded.
BWC Footage – Undesignated (UD) Officer On October 11, 2023, beginning about 2:14 p.m., UD Officer’s BWC footage captured CW #2 telling UD Officer that, at about 1:55 p.m., he was stopped for the eastbound red light on Judson Street that controlled traffic through its intersection with Islington Avenue. He first noticed an e-bike in his rear-view mirror and then watched it travel past him, from behind, at a high rate of speed through the red light, into the intersection, and hit a car. The collision knocked the side mirror off the vehicle the e-bike hit. He said, “I didn’t even know he was being chased, or being followed, or whatever by the other officer.” The e-bike driver flew high above the lights and was very hurt. A police motorcycle also came from behind his location, activated its emergency lights, stopped at the intersection and the proceeded into the intersection, after which the officer started first-aid.
BWC Footage - WO #1WO #1’s BWC footage began October 11, 2023, at 1:59 p.m. As she exited her police vehicle, the video captured the post-collision scene looking south from the southbound lanes of Islington Avenue, just north of its intersection at Judson Street. She walked the scene, took notes, and returned to her police vehicle before walking back into the intersection. Paramedics loaded a man [now known to be the Complainant] into an ambulance. She talked to a witness – CW #3 – who told her the Complainant “blew through the red light and a red car hit him and he flew through the air”, adding he did not see the Complainant wearing a helmet and, “Cops got here really quick too.”
WO #1 walked to where the Complainant’s e-bike lay, then to the ambulance. The Complainant was in the ambulance, on a stretcher, moaning. She asked him if he had taken any alcohol or drugs, and the Complainant said, “No.” She asked a paramedic if the Complainant had a helmet and was told, “I don’t know.” She said she did not smell any alcohol.
WO #1 then spoke to a man - CW #4 - who drove the vehicle the Complainant had struck. CW #4 told her he had not consumed any alcohol. She told him she was not going to ask him any collision-related questions as a detective might want to speak to him first. She noted the damage at the passenger side and windshield of CW #4’s vehicle.
WO #1 then spoke to a police officer before returning to her police vehicle where she covered the lens of her BWC and made use of the computer in the vehicle. A police officer - UD Officer - told her he had talked to CW #2, who saw the “e-bike heading east then ran a red and a TPS motorbike was there and turned on its lights”. An unidentified voice [believed to be the SO] said, “The sarge told us to turn our cameras off as there was no more investigation.” WO #1 said she would pause her BWC. The video ended at 2:40 p.m.
Materials Obtained from Police ServiceUpon request, the SIU received the following materials from the TPS between October 17, 2023, and December 12, 2023:
- Involved police officers list;
- Civilian witness list;
- Police communications recordings;
- Scene photographs;
- BWC footage – WO #1;
- BWC footage - UD Officer;
- BWC footage – SO;
- BWC footage – WO #2;
- GPS data – police motorcycle; and
- TPS Policy – Suspect Apprehension and Pursuit.
Materials Obtained from Other SourcesThe SIU obtained the following records from other sources between November 21, 2023, and January 19, 2024:
- Medical records – Complainant – SMH (received January 19, 2024);
- Video footage – Ourland Community Centre (received November 27, 2023);
- Video footage – Clutch Automotive Sales (received November 21, 2023); and
- Video footage – Cordeiro Roofing (received November 21, 2023).
In the afternoon of October 11, 2023, the SO was riding his marked police motorcycle on Evans Avenue when an e-bike came to his attention and he decided to follow it. The e-bike was being operated by a male not wearing a helmet – a traffic offence.
The e-bike operator was the Complainant. Aware he was being followed by the SO, the Complainant accelerated to get away. He turned from westbound Evans Avenue onto southbound Horner Avenue where he engaged in reckless driving – he jumped the westside curb, travelled at speed on the west sidewalk and adjacent grass approaching Judson Street, and veered into a left-hand turn onto Judson Street from the west sidewalk.
The SO pursued the Complainant down Horner Avenue with his emergency lights activated, eventually pulling alongside him in the curb lane as the e-bike travelled off road. When the Complainant turned left behind him onto Judson Street, the officer executed a U-turn and then turned right to continue the chase. By this time, the Complainant was well ahead of the SO.
Once on Judson Street, the SO accelerated eastward to close the gap with the e-bike. The officer reached a top speed of about 137 km/h about 200 metres from Islington Avenue, approximately 400 metres east of Judson Street, after which he started to decelerate. The SO arrived at the Islington Avenue intersection – the site of a motor vehicle collision – seconds later.
The Complainant had entered the Islington Avenue intersection on a red light and was struck by a southbound vehicle. The impact tossed him from the e-bike and into the northbound lanes.
The SO approached the Complainant to render aid. He radioed a request for an ambulance to the area. The time was about 1:47 p.m.
The Complainant was transported to hospital and diagnosed with fractures of the left leg, left ankle and spine.
Section 219, 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,
(a) an indictable offence and liable to imprisonment for a term of not more than 10 years; or (b) an offence punishable on summary conviction.
Section 320.13 (1) Criminal Code – Dangerous Operation Causing Bodily Harm
O. Reg. 266/10 - Suspect Apprehension Pursuits - Initiating or Continuing Pursuit
(a) if the police officer has reason to believe that a criminal offence has been committed or is about to be committed; or(b) for the purposes of motor vehicle identification or the identification of an individual in the vehicle.
Analysis and Director's Decision
The offence that arises for consideration is dangerous driving causing bodily harm and criminal negligence causing bodily harm contrary to sections 320.13(2) and 221 of the Criminal Code. The former is predicated, in part, on conduct that amounts to a marked departure from the level of care that a reasonable person would have observed in the circumstances. The latter is premised on even more egregious conduct that demonstrates a wanton or reckless disregard for the lives or safety of other persons. It is not made out unless the neglect constitutes a marked and substantial departure from a reasonable standard of care. In the instant case, the question is whether there was any want of care on the part of the SO, sufficiently serious to attract criminal sanction, that caused or contributed to the collision. In my view, there was not.
The SO had cause to initiate a pursuit of the Complainant. He had seen him operating an e-bike without a helmet – an offence under the Highway Traffic Act. And there is no indication that he had identified the Complainant or the e-bike before the collision, either of which would have called for a termination of the pursuit under the terms of O. Reg. 266/10 – the regulation governing pursuits in the province.
With respect to the manner in which the SO comported himself throughout his engagement with the Complainant, I am unable to reasonably conclude that the officer transgressed the limits of care prescribed by the criminal law. There are aspects of the SO’s conduct that are subject to legitimate scrutiny. Pursuant to TPS policy, the officer ought not have pursued the e-bike. He was operating a motorcycle and the person he was chasing was also on a motorized bicycle – each a disqualifying factor. The SO also travelled at dangerously high speeds on Judson Street, topping out at 137 km/h. Lastly, the officer had observed enough of the Complainant’s dangerous driving to realize that his continued pursuit was not in the interests of public safety and, yet, he persisted. On the other side of the ledger, traffic along the pursuit route was light to moderate with very little pedestrian traffic and the area was mostly commercial and industrial in nature; that is to say, the dangers inherent in the SO’s speeds were not aggravated by environmental factors. The fact that the officer had his emergency lights activated for most of the pursuit, allowing third-party traffic notice of his presence, is another mitigating factor. Lastly, the evidence indicates that the SO, in the penultimate stages of the pursuit on Judson Street, was well behind the e-bike and no less than about 100 metres back as the Complainant entered the Islington Avenue intersection. In the circumstances, it would not be fair to say that the SO effectively pushed the Complainant into the intersection. As an eyewitness told the SIU, the Complainant could have turned right on Islington Avenue to continue his flight from police instead of continuing straight ahead.
On the aforementioned-record, when the SO’s indiscretions are weighed in the balance with the extenuating considerations, I am not satisfied on reasonable grounds that his conduct departed markedly from a reasonable standard of care. As such, there is no basis for proceeding with criminal charges against the officer.
Date: February 9, 2024
Electronically approved by
Special Investigations Unit
- 1) [Back to text]
- 1) Unless otherwise specified, 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) Hereafter, referred to as an e-bike. [Back to text]
- 3) The e-bike was not examined by SIU forensic investigators as it had been returned to a member of the Complainant’s family before the matter came to the attention of the SIU. [Back to text]
- 4) 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]
- 5) No other e-bikes or police vehicles were captured on any Cordeiro Roofing video footage contemporaneously to this pursuit though, at 1:58:03 p.m., a single TPS motorcycle was captured travelling northbound on Horner Avenue, and three more were captured traveling northbound in the passing lane of Horner Avenue at 2:12:49 p.m. [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.