Suspect with broken back ‘seriously injured’ in takedown by police outside Brampton bar, watchdog says

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Published July 10, 2024 at 4:06 pm

Brampton suspect broken back peel police SIU

No charges will be laid against a Peel police officer in the case of a man who had his back broken during an arrest in Brampton.

Ontario’s Special Investigations Unit says the takedown happened on March 11 after Peel Regional Police officers ran the licence plate of a vehicle parked at Chuck’s Roadhouse on Kennedy Road in Brampton.

Investigators say the vehicle came back to a 26-year-old male suspect with outstanding warrants for domestic violence-related offences by both Peel police and the Toronto Police Service.

A report from the SIU says officers – some in plain clothes – began surveillance on the vehicle.

“The plan was to confirm the Complainant’s presence in the area and to arrest him before he could re-enter the vehicle,” the report reads.

When officers spotted the suspect exiting the bar and moved in with at least four officers who took the suspect down to the ground, according to the report.

The SIU says it’s alleged but unconfirmed that at least one of the officers put their “knee on the back” of the suspect while on the ground.

The 26-year-old was later taken to an ambulance where he complained of back pain and the SIU says the man was “seriously injured,” suffering a fractured lumbar.

And while the SIU says evidence suggests the man put his hands up and surrendered before being knocked down, Director Joseph Martino says there was no “unlawful conduct by the arresting officers.”

The SIU said the suspect has a history of firearm possession, and that at least one of the officers wanted to get the man onto the ground “as quickly as possible to minimize the risk of violence.”

Investigators say the officer was interviewed “but declined to submit notes, as is the subject official’s legal right.”

It’s rare for the SIU to put forward charges against police officers, but last month the watchdog agency recommended an assault charge for a Peel police officer related to an arrest in Brampton last summer.

Martino said in a release there were “reasonable grounds” that a Peel Regional Police constable assaulted a 33-year-old man during the arrest.

The SIU is Ontario’s civilian law enforcement agency investigating police incidents where there has been death, serious injury, the discharge of a firearm, or allegations of sexual assault.

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