IIO update to officer-involved shooting in Prince George – Sept 14

For Immediate Release
Sept. 14, 2012

Independent Investigations Office

IIO update to officer-involved shooting in Prince George

SURREY – The Independent Investigations Office (IIO) confirms that investigators have completed the initial stages of the investigation and have returned to the IIO facility in Surrey.

On Thursday evening, Sept. 13, 2012, IIO personnel left the Prince George area where they had been since their deployment Monday night, Sept. 10, 2012. This deployment was in response to the notification of an officer involved shooting by the RCMP at 19:36 hours (7:36 p.m.). IIO investigators were at the scene by 00:12 hours (12:12 a.m.) Sept. 11, 2012.

The Sept.10, 2012 Prince George incident involved the Emergency Response Team and an individual who has been identified as 40 year old Greg Matters, of Prince George. An autopsy has been scheduled for Friday, Sept.14, 2012, in Kamloops.

Over the past four days, IIO investigators have conducted those investigative activities that are standard in any criminal investigation and that are consistent with the major case management model. This include identifying civilian witnesses; designating officers as either subject or witness officers; conducting interviews; completing an examination of the scene; searching for and seizing physical evidence; logging exhibits; and examining/reviewing any other information that is obtained.

In addition to the IIO general investigative resources, the IIO Director of the Specialised Team (Forensics) was in Prince George providing oversight to the scene examination and the collection/preservation of evidence.

In order to provide support to the family, the IIO Manager, Affected Persons was also deployed to Prince George and will remain available to those who find themselves involved in the IIO investigation.

As with any investigation, next steps will be determined after a thorough and comprehensive review of the information, evidence and other material that has been obtained to date.

The IIO and the involved police service (RCMP Prince George) continue to work within the terms agreed upon in the Memorandum of Understanding that was signed by the Chief Civilian Director and B.C.’s police services in July 2012.

Once the IIO investigation is completed, the Chief Civilian Director will determine if he believes an offence may have taken place. If yes, he will refer the case to Crown counsel. If there is no report made to Crown counsel, the Chief Civilian Director will release a public report relating to the IIO investigation and his findings. The intent behind releasing this type of public report is that any reasonable member of the public reading the report would understand why the Chief Civilian Director did not make a report to Crown counsel.

As set by the Chief Civilian Director, the IIO’s goals are to conduct fair, unbiased, timely, thorough and competent investigations and ensure transparency through public reporting.
Quick Facts:

  • The IIO was established under amendments to B.C.’s Police Act passed by the Legislature in 2011.
  • To ensure there is no perception of bias, the law provides that the Chief Civilian Director cannot be a person who is a current or former member of a police force or RCMP. No investigator may be appointed who has been a member of a police force in B.C. within the past five years.
  • The IIO has moved into the new facility in Surrey and is expected to have 60 full-time staff, and its investigative teams will be deployed across the province as required.
  • The IIO investigators, both civilians and former police officers, have completed significant training at the Justice Institute of BC and the Canadian Police College.
  • On or before Jan. 1, 2015, a special committee of the legislature will review the progress made towards the IIO being staffed solely with civilians who have never been police officers.

Learn More:

Independent Investigations Office website: http://www.iiobc.ca/

Owen Court
Senior Manager, Strategic Projects and Public Engagement Independent Investigations Office of BC
604 788-1600

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