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Firearms charges recommended against Victoria officer by B.C.'s police oversight agency

Emergency responders at Douglas Street and Tolmie Avenue in Victoria, where a man was shot and killed by police on Sept. 12, 2021. (CHEK News - image credit)
Emergency responders at Douglas Street and Tolmie Avenue in Victoria, where a man was shot and killed by police on Sept. 12, 2021. (CHEK News - image credit)

British Columbia's police oversight agency is recommending charges against a Victoria officer in relation to a September 2021 shooting death.

On Thursday, the Independent Investigations Officer of B.C. (IIO), said it had determined that "reasonable grounds exist to believe that one officer with the Victoria Police Department may have committed an offence in relation to the use of a firearm."

The agency has recommended charges against the officer, who has not been named, to the B.C. Prosecution Service.

The development comes more than two years after a man died when he was shot by police on Douglas Street at Tolmie Avenue, near Mayfair Mall.

Victoria police said at the time that officers from its force arrived at the scene mid-morning to aid officers from the neighbouring municipality of Saanich, after receiving reports of an armed man in crisis who was making threats.

At the time, police said on X, formerly Twitter, that they were trying to "de-escalate and negotiate with a person in crisis" and asked people to avoid the area.

Around 11 a.m., police said the man had been shot by police. He was pronounced dead at the scene.

In a video posted to social media at the time, Victoria police Chief Del Manak offered condolences to the family of the man who died. He also said he had "every confidence" his officers acted appropriately based on their training and experience.

The IIO investigates all police officer-related incidents that result in serious harm or death.