SIU Concludes Investigation in Toronto



    TORONTO, April 25 /CNW/ - James Cornish, the Director of the Special
Investigations Unit (SIU), has concluded that a Toronto Police Service (TPS)
officer is not criminally responsible for the serious injury to 24-year-old
Cornell Dussard.
    Eight SIU investigators probed the circumstances of Mr. Dussard's injury.
As part of the investigation, investigators identified one officer as having
discharged his gun and designated him as the subject officer. The subject
officer's handgun and uniform were seized for examination. Forensic
identification technicians processed the shooting scene and collected
evidentiary items such as a pair of scissors, three wooden planks, a police
ASP baton and one projectile. Investigators interviewed twelve police and
civilian interviews and analyzed police reports and records.
    The SIU investigation determined that on March 1, 2007, at approximately
2:15 p.m., two TPS officers responded to an unknown trouble call involving an
irate customer at a Cash Converters store at 3227 Eglinton Avenue East. A
store employee had called police after Mr. Dussard insisted on a refund for an
item he had purchased.
    The officers entered the store and found Mr. Dussard demanding a refund.
He was agitated and verbally abusive. The officers decided to arrest
Mr. Dussard for causing a disturbance after he continued his behaviour.
    Both officers became involved in a physical struggle during the course of
the arrest. The struggle moved from the front of the store to a rear storage
room. The altercation ended when one of the officers discharged his gun once
and struck Mr. Dussard in the upper chest.
    Mr. Dussard was arrested and transported to hospital where he was treated
for his injury. One of the officers was also taken to hospital where he was
treated for a broken hand, fractured finger and bruising. No one else inside
the store was injured.
    Director Cornish concluded that the officers were alive to the necessity
to continually adjust their choice of the type of force to use and varied
their approach throughout this event. He stated, "The subject officer saw the
use of lethal force as a last option and only resorted to it when he
reasonably believed that he was in danger of suffering grievous bodily injury
or worse."
    Mr. Dussard faces charges as a result of this incident and as a result,
the SIU will not be releasing any further information in relation to this
investigation in order to protect the fair trial interests of Mr. Dussard and
the community.

    The SIU is a civilian government agency that investigates circumstances
involving police and civilians, which have resulted in serious injury or
death. Under Section 113 of the Police Services Act, the Director of the SIU
has the authority to decide whether or not charges are warranted based on the
findings of an investigation. The Director's decision is reported to the
Attorney General.





For further information:

For further information: Rose Bliss, SIU Communications, Service des
communications, UES, Telephone, No de telephone: (416) 622-2342 or, ou
1-800-787-8529

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