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Ontario’s police watchdog says no charges warranted in Brampton crash, arrest

A photo of the scene in downtown Brampton in November 2019.
A photo of the scene in downtown Brampton in November 2019. Robbie Ford / Global News

Ontario’s police watchdog says no charges are warranted after a man suffered a broken nose in a crash and subsequent arrest in Brampton.

The incident occurred the evening of Nov. 17 in the area of Main and Queen streets.

At the time, officials said Peel police officers began following a vehicle along Hurontario Street that was believed to have been stolen.

Read more: Ontario’s police watchdog investigating Brampton crash involving Peel police cruisers

The officers tried to stop the vehicle at the Brampton intersection and, in the process, there was a crash between the suspect vehicle, two police cars and a civilian vehicle, officials said.

The SIU said a 46-year-old man, who was a passenger in the suspected stolen vehicle, suffered a serious injury in the incident.

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He, along with the driver, were arrested at the scene.

In Friday’s update, officials said the man had a broken nose. SIU Director Joseph Martino said it’s believed the subject officer also punched the suspect during the arrest, causing the injury.

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“I am unable to reasonably conclude that the punch constituted excessive force. The complainant was inside a stolen vehicle that had just blown through a red light and plowed headlong into a civilian’s car,” Martino wrote.

“Considered in context, the officers had every right to be concerned that the occupants of the Honda were a danger to the public and bent on escaping police apprehension. In the circumstances, I cannot fault any of the officers for having punched the complainant and forced him to the ground when the complainant did not immediately remove himself from the vehicle and surrender.”

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Martino said a struggle then ensued on the ground, but again he said he believes the force used by officers, including tasers, was warranted.

The SIU is an independent agency that investigates incidents involving police that have resulted in death, serious injury or alleged sexual assault.

— With files from Gabby Rodrigues