Bureau des enquêtes indépendantes
   
Bureau des enquêtes indépendates
« Notre engagement est de mener à bien notre mission d’enquêter de façon indépendante, sans influence de l’État ni des services policiers. »
2021-01-26

Independent investigation into the event at Miramichi on June 12, 2020: review of the conduct of the BEI investigation

Courtesy translation - Original in French

In June 2020, following a request for assistance from the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP), the Bureau des enquêtes indépendantes took over an independent investigation into the circumstances surrounding an event in New Brunswick, when a 48-year-old civilian died during an RCMP police intervention.

The BEI completed its independent investigation into the circumstances surrounding the event in Miramichi on June 12, 2020, and submitted its investigation report to the New Brunswick Public Prosecution Services on December 16, 2020.

Following the decision of the New Brunswick Public Prosecution Services not to lay charges against the police officers involved, the BEI is closing file BEI-2020-017.

The independent investigation

Time of the event: 6:58 p.m. (Atlantic time)
Time of alerting the BEI: 9:00 p.m. (Atlantic time)
Launch of investigation: 9:30 p.m. (Atlantic time)

The BEI deployed eight investigators who, with the support of two forensic identification technicians from the Sûreté du Québec, had the task of shedding light on this event. During the initial deployment, the team arrived at around 10:00 a.m. (Atlantic time) on June 13, 2020, and completed examining the scene at approximately 1:30 a.m. (Atlantic time) on June 14, 2020.

In this case, the BEI collected the testimony of eleven civilian witnesses, including an ambulance driver. It also analyzed the facts reported by the two police officers involved and one other police officer directly related to the event. 

Although outside its usual jurisdiction, the BEI saw to the application of its regulations within the framework of this independent investigation, including the Regulation respecting the conduct of the investigations of the Bureau des enquêtes indépendantes, which exhaustively lists the rights and obligations of the police force involved, the police officers involved and witness police officers.

Thus, all the requirements relating to the time limit for meeting the police officers involved provided for in the Regulation respecting the conduct of the investigations of the Bureau des enquêtes indépendantes were respected. In this case, there was no witness police officer within the meaning of the Regulations.

The information obtained during the investigation led to the conclusion that the obligations of the police officers involved and of the director of the police force involved provided for in the Regulation respecting the conduct of the investigations of the Bureau des enquêtes indépendantes were partially respected. Thus, one of the police officers submitted an accurate, detailed and comprehensive account of the facts that took place during the event, but refused to answer the investigators' questions.

The details of all interviews were provided to the New Brunswick Public Prosecution Services.

The BEI investigation report included in particular:
- The reports of the police officers involved required by the Regulation
- The RCMP reports concerning the event, including the call records and the relevant radio broadcast recordings
- The various expert reports deemed necessary, particularly in toxicology, ballistics and forensic biology
- Relevant personal information concerning the civilian involved
- A video that relates to the event, as filmed by a witness
- The autopsy report
- The scene investigation reports
- The monitoring reports and follow-up of seized documents
- All the notes of the BEI investigators concerning the file.

In addition, the BEI had appointed an investigator to liaise with the family members of the civilian involved throughout the investigation and to inform them of its progress and conclusion.

The mission of the Bureau des enquêtes indépendantes is to investigate all cases where a person, other than a police officer on duty, dies, suffers a serious injury or is injured by a firearm used by a police officer during a police intervention or during their detention by a police force.