May 16, 2019 6:15 pm
Updated: May 17, 2019 5:52 pm

Break-in suspect who crashed motorcycle in Hope dies, police watchdog confirms

Police on the scene of a serious motorcycle crash early Thursday morning in Hope.

Shane MacKichan

The man who allegedly fled police and crashed his motorcycle in Hope after a suspected break-in has died, B.C.’s civilian police watchdog said Friday.

According to the RCMP, officers were called to reports of a break-in at a mechanic shop in the 600 block of Old Hope Princeton Way just before 5 a.m. Thursday.

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Investigators said police were told of a suspicious man leaving the scene on a motorbike.

Shortly afterward, an officer spotted a man they believed to be the same person riding a motorcycle on Old Hope Princeton Way, police said.

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The officer attempted to stop the suspect, but the man drove off towards Water Avenue, according to RCMP.

Investigators said they were notified shortly afterward about a motorcycle crash at the intersection of Water Avenue and Old Hope Princeton Way.

“The driver of the motorcycle was seriously injured and was airlifted to hospital,” Independent Investigations Office (IIO) chief civilian director Ron MacDonald said Thursday.

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“As a result of the matter potentially being associated with the actions of police, the IIO is now investigating the incident.”

On Friday, the IIO said the driver died of his injuries.

The watchdog also said a “key witness who stopped at the scene” has been identified, and are calling on that person to contact investigators immediately to provide “valuable information.”

MacDonald said the IIO will look into whether there was a pursuit, and if so, whether it was appropriate and whether any potential police actions contributed to the crash.

The IIO’s mandate is to investigate any interaction with police that results in serious injury or death.

© 2019 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

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