B.C.’s police watchdog is recommending criminal charges be considered against a Prince George RCMP officer for the 2020 death of a man who was held in custody.
The Independent Investigations Office (IIO) said Monday that it had determined reasonable grounds that an officer committed offences that impacted the medical care received by Everett Riley Edward Patrick while in custody.
A report for consideration of charges has been filed with the BC Prosecution Service, which will make the final determination of whether charges are laid.
According to the IIO, Patrick was arrested by RCMP after officers responded to an alarm at E&I Sports on April 12, 2020. The store was known to police for selling firearms and ammunition.
At the time of the incident, the IIO said Patrick tried to flee and was later arrested “following several hours of negotiations.”
After Patrick was medically assessed and cleared for custody, he went into medical distress hours later while being held in RCMP cells. The IIO says Patrick was taken to hospital, where he “was found to be suffering from serious injury.”
On April 20, the IIO was notified that Patrick has died in hospital.
The IIO was subsequently tasked with investigating whether officer actions contributed to the incident.
The BC Prosecution Service says it will only lay charges if it is satisfied that there will be a substantial likelihood of conviction.
Both the BC Prosecution Service and the IIO declined to provide further comment on the case Monday.