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SIU clears Waterloo police officer after man’s face fractured during August arrest

File photo. Special Investigations Unit. Lars Hagberg/The Canadian Press

The province’s police watchdog has cleared a Waterloo Regional Police officer of wrongdoing after a suspect’s orbital bone was broken during an August arrest.

The Special Investigations Unit said officers were initially sent to a domestic disturbance call on Aug. 23 at a home on East Street in Kitchener.

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According to the report, a man was out on bail for assault charges but his mom was going to revoke his surety so he fled the house before officers arrived. The suspect was also said to be wanted on a Canada-wide warrant.

The SIU report says that an officer on patrol later spotted the suspect walking on Elgin Street. When the officer attempted to arrest the man, he punched the officer in the head and attempted to gouge out their eyes.

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The SIU says in response, the officer punched the man in the head and put him in a prone position to successfully arrest him.

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The suspect was then taken to a local hospital where he was diagnosed with a fracture to his left orbital bone.

SIU Director Joseph Martino decided the officer’s use of force was legally justified.

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

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