Independent Investigations Office
For Immediate Release
SURREY – The Independent Investigations Office of BC confirms that the critical incident under investigation in Smithers is now a death.
On February 14, 2015, at approximately 10:30 p.m., officers responded to a complaint involving an adult male at a residence. According to police, officers located the affected person; he appeared distraught, in emotional distress and did not comply with officers’ commands. Officers used OC spray to assist in the arrest. The affected person reported he was having difficulty breathing. EHS were called and after assessing the affected person, cleared him for transport to police cells. While being booked into cells, the affected person reportedly became uncooperative and a physical struggle took place. The affected person lost consciousness. He was transported to hospital where he remained until his death on February 21, 2015.
IIO investigators were in Smithers last week and will continue to investigate the file.
The RCMP are cooperating with the IIO investigation and both agencies are working within the Memorandum of Understanding. The BC Coroners Service maintains jurisdiction over any and all information related to the deceased.