The Independent Investigation Office (IIO) of B.C. has cleared Victoria police of any wrongdoing following the death of a man they arrested in November.
On Nov. 20 at 1:45 a.m., VicPD received a report that a man was causing a disturbance in the 600-block of Douglas Street. Police arrested him and had him assessed and cleared by Emergency Health Services (EHS) before transporting him to cells.
At 4:15 a.m., officers saw the man appeared unwell and had fallen off his bed. They quickly informed EHS which transported the man to a local hospital. There, he was found to be suffering from multiple pre-existing medical conditions. He had not sustained injuries from falling off his bed.
The man died in hospital on Nov. 21 as a result of his medical conditions.
After investigating the incident, the IIO found that at no point during the arrest or while in custody did police use any force against the man. The man also didn’t mention feeling ill or having pre-existing conditions to police.
IIO’s chief civilian director reviewed multiple sources of evidence, including video, medical information and a statement from an independent civilian witness and “determined that there are no reasonable grounds to consider that the actions or inactions of any officer played a role in the man’s death.”
The IIO said the speed of the officers’ response to the man’s distress was “appropriate and commendable.”
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