Issued by Serious Incident Response Team
SiRT – No Fault Found in Actions of Halifax Regional Police Officers Foot Chase of Suspect
The province’s Serious Incident Response Team (SiRT) today released its report regarding the foot chase of a man who was a suspect in a gun complaint in Halifax. The man was shot in the head by his own gun as he ran from police in the early morning of February 9, 2014.
At approximately 4:45 a.m., three Halifax Regional Police (HRP) officers gave chase to the 25-year-old male on Blowers Street in Halifax. He matched the description given of a person related to a gunshot that was fired in the downtown area about 30 minutes earlier. Police approached the man and two companions. While the other two persons complied with police directions to stop, the man ran down Blowers Street onto Barrington Street. As the officers gave chase, he suddenly fell to the ground after he fired a gun he had been carrying in his waist band. The round struck him in his right ear, and the man was declared deceased after taken to hospital by EHS a short time later. The medical examiner determined the gunshot was from very close range, and considered the cause of death to be an accidental gunshot.
The officers had reasonable grounds to attempt to detain the man, and video of the incident confirmed they had no contact with him at any time before he was shot by his own gun. They had a duty to attempt to detain the male, and committed no criminal offences by any of their actions.
The full report is available at http://sirt.novascotia.ca/sites/default/files/reports/Director's_Summary_of_Investigation_Director_ 2014_004 .pdf
SIRT is responsible for investigating all serious incidents involving police in Nova Scotia. Investigations are under the direction and control of independent civilian director Ron MacDonald, who is solely responsible for decisions respecting the laying of any charge.