Independent Investigations Office
For Immediate Release
Surrey, B.C. – The Independent Investigations Office (IIO) of BC has concluded an investigation into an incident in Chilliwack.
On June 24, 2020, RCMP officers interviewed a man, the affected person in this case, regarding an investigation into serious alleged offences. The man requested to go outside for a break, which was permitted as he was not being detained. The man did not return to complete the interview, but instead left the detachment without notifying officers.
A short time later, the man walked into traffic on Highway 1 and was struck by an oncoming commercial vehicle. The man did not survive his injuries.
The Chief Civilian Director has reviewed the evidence, including statements from independent witnesses, and has determined that the death of the man was not the result of police action or inaction. Although police do have a duty of care when an individual is being interviewed, including to ensure the person is not a danger to themselves, in this instance the man was not exhibiting any signs of distress which would have caused officers to be concerned for his welfare. Therefore, the officers cannot be held accountable for the outcome as the man was responsible for his own death.
As a result, the investigation has been concluded.
The IIO is the independent civilian oversight agency of the police in British Columbia. It investigates all officer-related incidents that result in serious harm or death, whether or not there is any allegation of wrongdoing.
If you are in need of help, here are some available mental health resources:
- If you are in crisis, call 310-6789 to be connected to the crisis center nearest you (an area code is not needed)
- Crisis Services Canada
- British Columbia: crisislines.bc.ca
- Vancouver and surrounding areas: crisiscentre.bc.ca
- Vancouver Island: vicrisis.ca
- VictimLinkBC – Call 1-800-563-0808