IIU injury probe ends after Winnipeg officer’s death
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The province’s civilian police oversight agency has released its final report on a serious injury suffered during a Winnipeg arrest — an unusual case in which the accused officer died before the IIU finished its investigation.
The Independent Investigation Unit of Manitoba said city police reported the June 10, 2022, incident Aug. 18, after an investigation by the Law Enforcement Review Agency confirmed the male suspect had a broken rib on his right side.
IIU director Zane Tessler’s report was made public Thursday.
The man, apparently frustrated with a pool party of teens and children at his neighbour’s home, started tearing down the fence between the Sonning Bay-area properties with a power saw.
The neighbour called for police, and the suspect went inside his own home.
The man later told IIU investigators police officers rushed and took him to the ground in his home after his pacemaker began going off, causing him to raise his arm in the air.
The man, who was charged with mischief under $5,000 for the fence incident, said five officers had him on the ground, alleging one used a Taser to strike him on the forehead.
He further alleged an officer was stepping on his ankles, while another had his knee on his back, as a third punched him on the right side.
Police said the man was combative, throwing punches at officers, including one who was struck on the head.
As the IIU began its probe, referring police and other documents, surveillance tape and conducting interviews, it deferred designating a single officer as the one to be investigated until Oct. 7.
However, the officer they would have designated was found dead Sept. 23. It’s unclear based on Tessler’s report how the officer died.