The Special Investigations Unit has cleared police over the injury of a man during a search of his Rockland home last year.
The Special Investigations Unit has cleared police over the injury of a man during a search of his Rockland home last year.

Police cleared over man's injury

Stephen Jeffery
EAP
Officers were not responsible for the injury of a man during a search of his Rockland home last year, the province’s police watchdog says.

The Special Investigations Unit (SIU) launched an investigation after a 53-year-old was injured while Ontario Provincial Police (OPP) executed a search warrant on October 29. According to a police statement at the time, the man was taken to hospital with serious injuries after police from the Russell County detachment and Child Exploitation Unit entered the Cecile Crescent property.

According to the SIU, the man stabbed himself with a pair of scissors while alone in a bathroom during the search. He had asked officers to use the bathroom but, when he did not respond to an officer when asked if he was okay, he was found inside with the scissors in his neck.

The man was taken to hospital with a neck injury, but did not consent to the release of his medical records to the SIU. In a statement, SIU director Joseph Martino said the agency lacked “definitive evidence regarding the nature and extent of his wound” because the medical records were not available.

“The little information the SIU does have about the injury suggests it was relatively minor,” he said. “Beyond that, the evidence establishes that the man stabbed himself in the neck through no fault of any of the officers present in his home.”

Martino said the case was discontinued as “the man is alone responsible for having stabbed himself” and there was not enough evidence to determine whether the injury could be considered “serious” as required for the SIU to continue the investigation. The agency was required to investigate the conduct of Ontario police officers in situations where death, serious injury, sexual assault, or the discharge of a firearm took place.