Independent Investigations Office
For Immediate Release
Surrey – The Independent Investigations Office of B.C. has deployed to Prince George to investigate an in-custody death.
According to police, at 10:32 p.m. on Tuesday July 18, 2017, RCMP officers were responding to a call of a male “casing vehicles” in the 1000 block of Central Street West in Prince George. Officers located the male and attempted to take him into custody. Police say a struggle ensued and they used OC (pepper) spray in the process of apprehending the male who was then placed in a police vehicle. The male appeared to be having trouble breathing and police requested medical assistance. Police say once the ambulance arrived, the man was taken out of the police vehicle and collapsed. He was pronounced deceased in hospital shortly after midnight.
IIO investigators are on scene and will be conducting tasks including obtaining physical evidence, designating and interviewing officers and reviewing available video footage.
The initial focus of the IIO investigation will be to determine if there is a connection between the death of the male and the actions or inactions of police. If there is no connection then the IIO will release jurisdiction, if there is a connection the IIO will continue investigating.
Any potential witnesses of this incident are asked to call the IIO at 1-855-446-8477.
The IIO will not be providing any information about the deceased as this is the responsibility of BC Coroners Service at their discretion.
No further information or updates will be provided at this time.