Office of the Chief Coroner re-investigating death of Stacy DeBungee

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THUNDER BAY — The death of a Rainy River First Nation man who died in Thunder Bay in 2015 is being re-investigated, a spokesperson with the province’s chief coroner confirmed Tuesday.

The Ontario Independent Police Review Director (OIPRD) identified nine deaths for re-investigation and directed that an assessment be made as to whether the death of Stacy DeBungee also be re-investigated, Stephanie Rea with the Office of the Chief Coroner said Tuesday, Feb. 2.

“The re-investigation team has done that and determined the best way forward was to do the re-investigation itself,” Rea said in an emailed statement.

The new investigation is not yet complete and no further details were provided.

The OIPRD which oversees complaints against police in Ontario found officers on the case ignored or neglected important leads and that racism may have influenced handling of the investigation.

It concluded there were “probably grounds to support an allegation of neglect of duty.”

For the full Broken Trust: Indigenous People and the Thunder Bay Police Service report released in December 2018, go here.

Karen Edwards, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, Thunder Bay Source