SIU clears police after man’s death in Kingston fast food incident

Kingston Police outside Harvey’s on July 23, 2019. Photo by Cris Vilela.

The Special Investigations Unit (SIU) has determined no officer commited a criminal offence in connection with the death of a 52-year-old man following his interaction with Kingston Police at a downtown fast food restaurant on July 23, 2019.

The SIU’s report states that, on that date, Kingston Police officers attended a local restaurant to assist paramedics by apprehending a 52-year-old man.

Following a struggle, the officers were eventually able to gain control of the man who was then transported to hospital by paramedics, according to the report. At the hospital, the man later stopped breathing and passed away. According to SIU, the pathologist at autopsy attributed the cause of the man’s death to sudden cardiorespiratory arrest due to methamphetamine, fentanyl and carfentanil toxicity.

More details on the investigation can be read in Kingstonist’s previous coverage of the event.

The Director of the Special Investigations Unit, Joseph Martino, made the determination of no reasonable grounds to believe that any officer committed a criminal offence in connection with the man’s death.

The SIU is an arm’s length agency that investigates reports involving police where there has been death, serious injury or allegations of sexual assault. Under the Police Services Act, the Director of the SIU must consider whether an officer has committed a criminal offence in connection with the incident under investigation. Depending on the evidence, it may lay a criminal charge against the officer, if appropriate, or close the file without any charges being laid, and report the results of any investigations to the Attorney General. 

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