Black Press file photo

Penticton RCMP not at fault for in-custody death

An investigation lead by IIO determined the arresting officer, detachment not at fault

A man’s death while in Penticton RCMP custody was determined to be caused by an existing health condition.

An investigation performed by the Independent Investigations Office of BC (IIO) determined the 55-year-old man’s death that happened on Aug. 16, 2018, to be “inevitable,” stating that after an autopsy was performed the pathologist was of the opinion that the cause of death was heart disease.

“This is an unfortunate situation where (the man’s) health caused his death during the short period of time he was in custody awaiting his attendance in court. The autopsy confirmed there was no trauma suffered by (the man), other than would be expected from lifesaving measures, and that his death was caused by heart disease,” reads the IIO’s report. “It would appear his death was inevitable, and although it may be that the stress of his arrest aggravated the situation somewhat, (the officer) was acting entirely lawfully and appropriately throughout.”

The man was pulled over during a routine traffic stop by Keremeos RCMP at approximately 7:05 a.m. on Aug. 16 when it was determined he had an outstanding arrest warrant. After allowing the man to move his vehicle to a safe location and permitting him to bring his medication, the arresting officer transported the man to the Penticton detachment between 7:35 and 7:39 a.m.

The IIO report states that while in custody, the man’s movements were continuously recorded by CCTV “from the time he and (the officer) arrived in the secure bay at 7:39 a.m. until (he) was taken out of his cell by paramedics at 9:58 p.m.”

“The only physical contact between (the man) and (the officer) that is seen on CCTV was when handcuffs were removed and during the finger printing process,” reads the report. “(The man) was then given access to his medications and secured in a cell. Cell block records also confirm that (the man) was provided with his medication.”

Once in his cell, the report states that the man laid down on his left side and then sat up briefly, returning to a laid down position at approximately 9:10 a.m. According to cell block records, he was “checked and observed at appropriate intervals during this time” and sherriffs entered his cell at 9:19 a.m.

“CCTV shows (the sherriff) entering (the man’s) cell and when (he) did not immediately rouse (the sherriff) left and returned with another sherriff. The sherriffs quicky commenced and continued CPR until 9:29 a.m. when paramedics arriced and took over,” states the investigation report.

The man was then transported to the hospital where he was pronounced dead at 10:16 a.m. During the autopsy, which was performed with IIO investigators present, the pathologist found that the man’s heart was enlarged and his arteries were significantly obstructed.

“The evidence collected does not provide grounds to consider any charges against any officer. (The arresting officer) acted as requierd by his duties in accordance with the law,” states the report.

To report a typo, email: editor@pentictonwesternnews.com.

Jordyn Thomson | Reporter
JordynThomson 
Send Jordyn Thomson an email.
Like the Western News on Facebook.
Follow us on Twitter.

Just Posted

Snowy morning on mountain west of Penticton

Snow fell for about two hours and stayed on the ground for four, says resort manager

Penticton woman dies after Riva Ridge Mobile Park fire in May

BC Coroners Service says investigation in progress

Celebration of the life of Penticton philanthropist Kampe scheduled

David Kampe, 77, died on May 8 surrounded by friends and family.

From fire to awards: wild week for Similkameen winery

Roller coaster of a week for the owners at Forbidden Fruit Winery in Cawston

MPs hear retired Penticton nurse’s petition to change compensation for fatal medical errors

Teri McGrath wants provinces to implement no-fault system for medical errors

Snowy morning on mountain west of Penticton

Snow fell for about two hours and stayed on the ground for four, says resort manager

B.C. teen killed by falling tree near Victoria

Second youth also injured in freak incident during field trip at Camp Barnard near Sooke

Elias Pettersson wins Calder Trophy as NHL’s top rookie

Vancouver forward first Canuck to win award since Pavel Bure in 1992

FVRD chair calls B.C. incineration plan for Philippines waste ‘disturbing’

Metro Vancouver ‘uniquely capable’ of safely disposing of waste coming back to Canada, say officials

VIDEO: Acknowledging skeptics, finance minister vows to build Trans Mountain project

Bill Morneau said he recognizes ‘huge amount of anxiety’ in Calgary over future of oil and gas sector

Shovels could be in the ground on Trans Mountain by September, CEO says

Ian Anderson points to weeks likely required for NEB to reinstate 2016 regulatory record

Interior forestry workers ratify five-year contract

It was approved by United Steelworkers Local 1-417, which represents workers in Kamloops, Kelowna

Scorpion gives birth after hitching ride in B.C. woman’s luggage

A Vancouver woman inadvertently brought the animal home from a trip to Cuba

Man surrenders following standoff in Kamloops

Massive police response in Kamloops was in connection with a reported domestic dispute

Most Read