UPDATE: Police watchdog investigates Smithers arrest

A man who became unconscious after he was taken into custody by Smithers RCMP had been pepper-sprayed during the arrest.

The Independent Investigations Office of B.C. was in Smithers yesterday to look into why a man became unconscious during an RCMP arrest last week.

At about 10.30 p.m. on Feb. 14 police were called to a residence in Smithers, where they found the affected adult male in emotional distress.

According to IIOBC, RCMP officers pepper-sprayed the man when he resisted arrest before taking him into custody.

Almost immediately after his arrest the man became unconscious and emergency health services were called.

The man was transported to hospital, where he remains.

IIOBC was notified of the incident about an hour after it took place.

Its primary investigator and another investigator were in Smithers yesterday to conduct interviews with civilians and police and collect information such as paramedic crew reports and radio transmissions.

A family support worker travelled with them.

“We have to determine two things,” said IIOC spokesperson Kellie Kilpatrick.

“One is if we have an incident of death or serious harm, which we do, and the other is we have to establish whether there is a nexus, or a relationship, between what happened to the man and an officer’s actions .. we’re still determining that.”

The IIOBC will either release jurisdiction over the case if it deems the injury is not related to officer conduct, or continue its investigations.

Kilpatrick said IIOBC would make that decision before the end of next week.

She said there would be no forensic investigation because there was no “scene” to examine.

IIOBC would not disclose the man’s condition, age, place of residence or the hospital where he is being treated.





Just Posted

Prince Rupert Gas Transmission project searches for partners

TransCanada is renewing permits for its natural gas pipeline project to North Coast.

Coastal GasLink stops work to investigate archaeological find

OGC archaeologists are en route to the Houston-area site where Unist’ot’en report finding stone tools

Province announces $100-million grant funding for Northwest communities

The Northern Capital and Planning Grant will go to four regional districts and 22 municipalities

UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples: The framework for reconciliation

Guest View from writers involved in the United Nations declaration.

Lego League provincial champions

Smithers’ Marley and Amelie are B.C. Lego League champions, and are fundraising to compete in Texas.

B.C. students win Great Waters Challenge video contest

Video, mural and song about saving the salmon claims the top prize

Cabinet likely to extend deadline to reconsider Trans Mountain pipeline

The can’t decide the pipeline’s fate until a new round of consultations with Indigenous communities

B.C. government provides $75,000 towards salmon study

Study looks at abundance and health of Pacific salmon in Gulf of Alaska

Murdered and missing honoured at Stolen Sisters Memorial March in B.C.

‘We come together to make change within the systems in our society’

UBC researchers develop inexpensive tool to test drinking water

The tricoder can test for biological contamination in real-time

Disgraced ex-Congressman Anthony Weiner released from prison

He was convicted of having illicit online contact with a 15-year-old North Carolina girl in 2017

B.C. communities push back against climate change damages campaign

Activists copying California case that was tossed out of court

Most Read