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IIO investigating 2019 Falkland incident after arrested man’s injuries reported to be serious

A police vehicle can be seen blocking traffic along Highway 97 near Westwold on Dec. 3, 2019. Global News

A police incident in the Falkland and Westwold area in December 2019 that saw shots fired at officers may have also resulted in more serious injuries to one of the accused than first thought.

B.C.’s Independent Investigations Office (IIO), which investigates whenever there are deaths or allegations of serious harm during incidents involving police, said it’s launched an investigation into the Dec. 3, 2019 incident.

That day police say officers were trying to conduct a traffic stop, but the vehicle fled and shots were fired at officers.

The RCMP ultimately resorted to a tire deflation device to bring the car to a stop and arrested a man and a woman.

At the time, the RCMP said it was “not aware of any serious injuries.”

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However, the IIO said the man’s arrest involved a police dog and in March of this year police were informed he “may have sustained serious injury during the incident.”

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Police passed this information on to the IIO in April and the watchdog organization launched an investigation.

Read more: Accused pleads guilty to firing at police during North Okanagan traffic stop

In January, Darwyn Allen Curtis Sellars entered several guilty pleas related to the incident, admitting to discharging a restricted or prohibited firearm at three officers as well as fleeing from police.

Sellars also pleaded guilty to three charges from the day before the incident.

He admitted that on Dec. 2, 2019, he broke into a dwelling at Corbett Lake Lodge, near Merritt, intending to commit theft and that the same day he fled from police near Kamloops.

Those previous incidents likely played a role in the RCMP’s decision on Dec. 3 to set up roadblocks to try and stop the vehicle.

Sellars’ case is now expected back in court on June 25 for sentencing.

His co-accused, Jennifer Singleton, previously pleaded guilty to occupying a vehicle knowing there was a firearm or prohibited item present and received a conditional discharge.

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