Inquest ordered for Nanaimo man who died following a police incident


Three and a half years after Craig Andrew Ford died, a public inquest has been scheduled to look into his death.

The 49-year-old Nanaimo man was walking through a residential area of the city on June 14, 2016, when RCMP were called because he appeared to be carrying a knife.

A report released in 2017 by the office that examines all cases of police-involved injury or death cleared the officers involved, finding there was little choice but to shoot when Ford repeatedly refused orders to drop the knife and advanced toward police.

The report says Ford had earlier told another officer at the scene that the incident would only end “when I’m dead or you’re dead.”

Witnesses say they repeatedly heard RCMP members shouting at Ford to drop the knife, before two shots were fired, hitting him in the chest.

Under the Coroners Act, inquests are mandatory for any death that occurs while someone was detained or in the custody of a peace officer.

The process of an inquest allows for the public presentation of evidence relating to death. Witnesses under oath will be called to determine the facts surrounding Ford’s death.

Presiding coroner Michael Egilson and jury will then have the opportunity to make recommendations aimed at preventing deaths under similar circumstances, when the inquest begins July 27, in Nanaimo.

With files from the Canadian Press.


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