An officer who fatally shot a man that pointed a replica firearm at him in a July 2022 incident was justified in his use of lethal force and will not be charged, B.C.’s police watchdog concluded in a report released Wednesday.
The six-page document released by the Independent Investigations Office lays out several witness reports, one of which was from the woman who made the call to police, who is referred to as Civilian Witness 1, or CW1 in the report.
According to her, the confrontation began when she went to pick up Sean Brown, the 54-year-old suspect referred to as AP.
“She went to pick up AP, as he had been suffering from depression and mental health issues,” the report reads. “CW1 drank a beer with AP, but went back to her car to wait for him after he produced a three quarters full bottle of rum.”
At some point during their drive, an argument broke out between Brown and the witness. Once it turned physical, she dialed 911.
The report carries on to say several more witnesses came forward to describe the tragic event moment by moment, which ultimately told the same story: Police were called, a struggle ensued between Brown and the officer and Brown pointed a replica firearm at the officer’s head.
“At that point, it was absolutely reasonable for SO (Subject Officer) to believe that he was in imminent danger of grievous bodily harm or death, and was justified in using lethal force in self-defence,” the report reads.
The analysis of the incident calls it “not complicated” and states the officer’s use of force was justified.
The incident is being considered a reasonable perception of “grievous bodily harm or death,” states the IIO, adding there is no other evidence that would point to any other conclusion.
The full report can be read on the IIO’s website.