N.S. police watchdog says shooting involving man with axe was 'reasonable'

No charges will be laid against a Mountie in Nova Scotia who shot and injured a suspect while responding to a call in June.  (David Bell/CBC - image credit)
No charges will be laid against a Mountie in Nova Scotia who shot and injured a suspect while responding to a call in June. (David Bell/CBC - image credit)

No charges will be laid against a Mountie who shot and injured a suspect while responding to a call of a man wielding an axe in Malagash, N.S., in June.

The Serious Incident Response Team, which independently investigates serious incidents arising from the actions of police in Nova Scotia, released a report on Friday stating it was reasonable to conclude the officer feared his life was in danger and that "the use of his firearm to shoot the suspect was justified in the circumstances."

On June 2, members of Cumberland County and Colchester County RCMP responded to a call of a man wielding an axe who was threatening to kill his mother.

The mother fled the home and called 911. Her son and her daughter remained in the residence.

Police say officers struggled to get the man to come out of the house. One officer broke into the home through the back door.

The man started toward the officer with the axe raised and the officer tried to use his stun gun on him to no effect, according to police.

The officer then shot the man in the leg. The suspect was taken into custody and was treated in hospital for the wound.

No other injuries were reported.

In his report, interim director John Scott said "there is absolutely nothing to question about how the [officer] handled the situation" after his review of body camera footage from the officer who fired the shot.

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