SIU clears Peel cops after resisting suspect had nose broken during arrest

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Published July 15, 2021 at 6:09 pm

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The Special Investigations Unit has cleared two Peel Regional Police officers of wrong-doing after a man had his nose broken following a fight and arrest.

The SIU is a civilian law enforcement agency that investigates incidents involving an official where there has been death, serious injury, the discharge of a firearm at a person or an allegation of sexual assault.

According to the SIU report, on the morning of Feb. 26, Peel police received 9-1-1 calls about an ongoing dispute at the Tim Hortons located on the corner of Queen St. E. and West Dr. in Brampton.

When police arrived, three men were engaged in a heated, sometimes physical, dispute. At least one of the men was struck with a baseball bat.

The fight followed an accusation of items being stolen from a tow truck. One of the men then stole a two truck, drove it away and was chased by police for a short while.

The driver, who was intoxicated, drove recklessly, failing to stop at a stop sign on at least one occasion and colliding with other vehicles. The officers were ordered to discontinue any pursuit of the truck.

Other tow truck drivers then helped the police track the stolen vehicle northbound on Hansen Rd. N., where it crashed into a snowbank in front of a house. Police were able to box him in before he could drive away.

Several officers approached the tow truck and attempted to remove him from the vehicle, using tasers and pepper spray. After finally being dragged from the truck by several officers, the driver continued to resist on the ground. Officers kneed him before finally handcuffing him and taking him into custody.

At some point during all of the struggles, the man suffered a broken nose and was taken to Brampton Civic hospital.

Joseph Martino, director of the SIU, could not determine whether the injury occurred during the early fight at Tim Hortons or the arrest. And even if it was the result of the officers, his decision is clear that the officers were using appropriate force to subdue a resisting suspect.

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