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Officers not negligent in death of Langley teen Carson Crimeni: B.C. IIO

Petition to rename Langley skate park after Carson Crimeni
WATCH: (Aired Sept. 1, 2019) A petition is gaining traction to rename the Langley skateboard park where Carson Crimeni was last seen before he died. Jill Bennett reports.

B.C’s police watchdog says officers did not commit an offence in regards to the death of Langley teen Carson Crimeni.

Crimeni, 14, died in August of a suspected drug overdose in an incident that was filmed and then shared on social media.

The video depicts the teen agitated, sweating and in deteriorating condition in the Walnut Grove skate park on Aug. 7 as a group of older youth mock and laugh at him.

Crimeni was later found barely breathing. He was rushed to hospital where he died.

Globalnews.ca coverage of the death of Carson Crimeni

The Independent Investigations Office of B.C. (IIO), which investigates police-related incidents involving death or serious harm, probed the conduct of two officers who were sent to look for Crimeni but left the park without finding him. They were dispatched after someone saw a Snapchat video of the teen and made a 911 call.

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According to the IIO report, evidence suggests Crimeni was no longer at the skate park around 7 p.m. and was near a baseball diamond on the far side of a community centre and a school.

RCMP received a report of the Snapchat video just after 8 p.m. and officers arrived at the skate park around 8:25 p.m., according to the IIO report. An ambulance came to the scene shortly afterwards. Minutes later, the officers radioed back, saying there was “nobody here.”

At 8:43 p.m. the officers responded to another call in the same area. They told paramedics, who had remained in the area, they had not found anyone in distress and had not come across anyone asking for help. The paramedics then left the scene.

Police received another 911 call at 10:39 p.m. after Crimeni was discovered near a baseball diamond located about 650 metres from the skate park, the report said.

READ MORE: ‘It’s so wrong’: Family, peers call for justice in apparent overdose death of Langley teen

The IIO concluded that the officers were not negligent in their duties, saying they spent 20 minutes at the skate park but did not find Crimeni or any information as to his whereabouts.

“We now know that this was because [Crimeni] and the group of young people he was with had moved to a location a considerable distance away,” the report said. “Unfortunately, there was nothing at the skate park to assist the officers in determining where [Crimeni] might have gone — how far and in which direction.”

— With files from Simon Little