The province’s Special Investigations Unit has determined that police gunfire struck and killed a boy during a shooting in the City of Kawartha Lakes in late November 2020.
In its report issued on Thursday, the SIU says following forensic evidence and a post-mortem examination, it has confirmed that a one-year-old boy died as a “result of being shot by police” on the morning of Nov. 26.
The agency has said three police officers opened fire on the man after his pickup truck crashed into an OPP cruiser on Pigeon Lake Road and another vehicle, just east of Lindsay. The incident injured a City of Kawartha Lakes OPP officer who was laying down a spike belt, the SIU said. The officer was taken to a Toronto hospital in stable condition and was transferred to Peterborough hospital a week later.
The SIU says the boy was pronounced deceased inside the pickup truck.
The boy’s 33-year-old father was also shot by police and died in hospital a week later, the SIU reports.
Peterborough County OPP had been investigating an alleged kidnapping involving a firearm at the time from a residence in the neighbouring Municipality of Trent Lakes and pursued the vehicle southeast.
The SIU says investigators analyzed bloodstains in a pickup truck driven by the father, the trajectory of shots that struck the truck, firearms, cartridge cases and projectiles. The decision was also based on reports prepared by the Centre of Forensic Sciences.
The SIU seized three police-issued guns and a fourth firearm found in the pickup truck.
The post-mortem results from the boy’s father have yet to be received, the SIU tells Global News Peterborough.
The investigation is ongoing, the SIU stated.
The SIU tells Global News Peterborough that the three subject officers have not spoken to investigators, echoing the same response issued on Jan. 15.
“Three officers discharged their firearm in the course of the incident, and as such, they were designated as subject officers,” said spokesperson Monica Hudon. “They have not as yet availed themselves of an opportunity to be interviewed. It’s important to note that subject officers are under no legal obligation to speak with the SIU but may if they choose to do so.”
“Once all of the evidence is in, the director of the SIU will review it and determine if there is reasonable ground to lay charges (against the officers) or not,” Hudon tells Global News Peterborough.
In a tweet, OPP Commissioner Thomas Carrique says the OPP continue to offer their deepest sympathies to the family and those affected the incident as “we await the final report of the Kawartha Lakes SIU investigation.”
“It is devastating to all OPP members when an innocent life is lost during an incident,” he said.
The names of the boy and the father have not been publicly released by police or the SIU. A GoFundMe page identified the boy as Jameson Michael Shapiro.
The SIU investigates all incidents involving police when there is a civilian death, serious injury, sexual assault and/or the discharge of a firearm at a person.