SIU Investigating Death in Thunder Bay Police Cell

Special Investigations Unit

THUNDER BAY – POLICING – The circumstances surrounding a fifty-year-old man’s death while in the custody of Thunder Bay Police in under investigation. The province’s Special Investigations Unit is examining the circumstances surrounding the death of a 50-year-old man who was lodged in a Thunder Bay police station cell last night.

Preliminary information suggests the following:
  • At approximately 7:45 p.m. on Wednesday, July 19, 2017, Thunder Bay Police Service officers responded to an address on Fort William Road to deal with an individual. EMS personnel were also present, and they medically cleared the man.
  • Shortly after, the man was taken to the Thunder Bay police station where he was lodged in a cell.
  • Shortly after midnight, the man was found not breathing. CPR was commenced, and EMS was contacted.
  • The man was transported to hospital where he was pronounced dead at 1:30 a.m. on July 20, 2017.
Four investigators and two forensic investigators have been assigned to this incident.
At this time, four witness officers and one subject officer have been designated.
The SIU is urging anyone who may have information about this investigation to contact the lead investigator at 1-800-787-8529 ext. 2293. The Unit is also urging anyone who may have any video evidence related to this incident to upload that video through the SIU website.

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, lay a criminal charge against the officer if appropriate or close the file without any charges being laid
  • report the results of any investigations to the Attorney General.
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