IIO recommends charges after B.C. man dies following arrest involving pepper spray

The man collapsed while being taken out of the police vehicle and into an ambulance, and died shortly after

B.C.’s police watchdog is recommending charges against RCMP officers after a man died shortly after being arrested in Prince George.

The charges involve issues related to the use of force by Mounties, as well as allegations of obstruction of justice where a video was deleted from a civilian’s phone, the Independent Investigations Office of B.C. said in a statement Tuesday.

The incident happened just after 10:30 p.m. on July 18, 2017, when officers responded to reports of a man “casing vehicles” in the 1000 block of Central Street West.

According to the IIO’s report, a struggle ensued and pepper spray was used to apprehend the man. Police then called for paramedics after the man appeared to have trouble breathing.

The man collapsed while being taken out of the police vehicle and into an ambulance, and died shortly after.

For charges to be approved, the B.C. Prosecution Service must be satisfied that there is a substantial likelihood of conviction and the prosecution is in the public’s interest.

Black Press Media has reached out to Crown counsel for further details.


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