IIO clears Nanaimo RCMP of wrongdoing after man suffers serious injuries in holding cell

IIO clears Nanaimo RCMP of wrongdoing after man suffers serious injuries in holding cell
Photo: Nicholas Pescod/CHEK News

The Independent Investigations Office (IIO) of BC has cleared the Nanaimo RCMP of any wrongdoing after a man suffered serious injuries while in police custody.

On Dec. 8, 2023, a man was arrested without incident from a Nanaimo business and lodged in an RCMP detachment cell, says the IIO in a decision notice Wednesday.

It says two days later, on Dec. 10, while still in the cell the man experienced a medical event that caused him to fall and sustain a serious injury.

Nanaimo RCMP told the IIO it was around 11:45 a.m. when the man suddenly collapsed, and paramedics from Emergency Health Services then transported him to hospital.

Investigation wraps up

In its initial news release, the IIO said it was notified the same day the incident happened, prompting an investigation.

According to the investigations office, video footage from the arrest scene and the entirety of the man’s time in the holding cell shows no force was used against him at any time.

They say the man was the only occupant of his cell.

“Further, there was no prior indication of the medical event leading to his injury before it occurred,” the IIO said in the notice.

Its chief civilian director reviewed the evidence, including the video footage as well as medical records and police information, and determined that “there is no connection between police actions or inaction and the man’s injury.”

The IIO also says there “is no evidence to support that force was used by police, or any other action that could have contributed to the man’s condition.”

It adds that the investigation is now concluded.

The IIO, the independent civilian oversight agency of the police in B.C., investigates all officer-related incidents that result in serious harm or death, whether or not there is any allegation of wrongdoing.

Ethan MorneauEthan Morneau

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