SIU probing fatal police-involved shooting at OPP detachment

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SIU probing fatal police-involved shooting at OPP detachment

Postby Thomas » Sun Dec 24, 2017 4:42 pm

SIU probing fatal police-involved shooting at OPP detachment in Morrisburg, Ont.

The province’s Special Investigations Unit says it has been called to investigate the shooting death of a man at the OPP detachment in the town of Morrisburg in eastern Ontario.

The SIU said that at around noon on Saturday, a man entered the OPP detachment on Fifth Street West in the town.

There was an “interaction” between the man and several OPP officers and one of the officers discharged a firearm, which struck the victim.

The man was pronounced dead at the scene. The OPP told The Canadian Press that one of its officers was injured in the encounter and is receiving treatment.

Four investigators and three forensic investigators have been assigned to this incident, the SIU said.

Morrisburg is located on the banks of the St. Lawrence River, south of Highway 401, approximately 43 kilometres west of Cornwall.

The SIU is called to investigate any interaction between an Ontario police officer and a member of the public that results in death, serious injury or an allegation of sexual assault.

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Family demands answers after fatal shooting at Morrisburg, O

Postby Thomas » Sun Dec 24, 2017 4:48 pm

Family demands answers after fatal shooting at Morrisburg, Ont., OPP detachment

Babak Saidi was the 'kindest, sweetest, most loving person,' sister says

An eastern Ontario family is demanding answers after a 43-year-old man died Saturday following a shooting at the Ontario Provincial Police detachment in Morrisburg, Ont.

Babak Saidi, who had schizophrenia, was required to check in weekly at the detachment after his 2014 conviction for assault and battery, his sister Elly Saidi told CBC News Saturday evening.

He had been visiting the detachment without any incident, she said — until this weekend, when his check-in went horribly wrong.

"My brother, he was the kindest, sweetest, most loving person," Elly Saidi said. "He had a mental disability, and we need to know how to deal with a person with mental disability."

Ontario's police watchdog, the Special Investigations Unit, invoked its mandate following the fatal shooting Saturday afternoon.

Two shots

Babak Saidi departed for his Saturday morning rendezvous at the detachment with a tin full of freshly baked muffins.

The muffins were a Christmas gift for his father and a family friend who were picking him up from his farm near Cardinal, Ont., and bringing him into town.

They were also a sign, his sister said, that he was in a good mood.

Recounting her father's version of events, Elly Saidi said when they arrived at the police station, they were told to wait about 15 minutes. They went to do some grocery shopping, and when they came back, Babak Saidi got out of the car to go inside.

The next thing her father saw, she said, was her brother on the ground, with two officers on top of him.

Babak Saidi was taken into the detachment, she said, and then — within two minutes — her father heard two shots ring out.

'Sorry, your son is gone'

A police officer told her father and his friend to go wait at a nearby Tim Hortons, Elly Saidi said, and that someone would come by to explain what happened.

"They waited for a few hours, and then the police came," she said. "My dad asked the police, 'Where is my son?' And the police officer told my dad that, sorry, your son is gone."

Ten hours after the shooting, Elly Saidi said, that remained the only detail the family had been given about what happened inside the detachment — an absence of information that was "unacceptable."

"I have to be strong for my parents. It's very hard to see my mom and my dad crying and being heartbroken," she said.

"My mom was sitting in a corner of the room, hugging my brother's picture. And all she's saying is, 'I don't know what happened. I don't know where his body is.'"

Trying to rebuild life

Elly Saidi said her brother had been trying to rebuild his life at the time of his death, raising sheep and cattle on his farm just west of Morrisburg.

A worker with homeless youth in Ottawa, Saidi said she was speaking out because there had been too many recent incidents where interactions between police officers and people with mental health issues had turned violent — even deadly.

She also said she was certain her brother was unarmed.

"They have absolutely no tools and no awareness to deal with people with mental disability. Too many people with mental disabilities have died at the hands of the police," she said.

"They need to have education and awareness [of] how to deal with people with mental disability. And not [assume] they're all bad and a menace to society."

SIU investigating fatal 'interaction'

In its initial statement, the SIU said that a man entered the OPP detachment on Fifth Street West at around noon and ended up having an "interaction" with the officers there.

One of the officers fired a gun and hit the man, the SIU said.

The man, whom the SIU confirmed Sunday was indeed Babak Saidi, was pronounced dead at the scene.

A post-mortem examination is scheduled to take place Wednesday in Ottawa, SIU spokeswoman Monica Hudon said.

In its own statement, the OPP said the man suffered fatal injuries after getting into an "altercation" with a Morrisburg police officer outside the detachment.

The officer was also being treated for "undetermined" injuries, police said.

Const. Tylor Copeland, a spokesman for the Stormont, Dundas and Glengarry OPP, referred questions about the shooting to the SIU.

He did say that in more than a decade as an OPP officer, he hadn't heard of any shootings at the Morrisburg police station.

The officer who fired the weapon has not been named.

7 investigators on the case

The SIU probes incidents involving police and civilians that result in serious injury, death or allegations of sexual assault.

Seven investigators have been assigned to the case, the SIU said.

The SIU said Sunday they would be interviewing the officer who is the subject of their investigation, as well as 10 officers who were witnesses.

Anyone with information can call the lead investigator at 1-800-787-8529.

Morrisburg is approximately 80 kilometres south of Ottawa.

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Identity of man killed in OPP-involved shooting released

Postby Thomas » Mon Dec 25, 2017 4:21 am

The province’s Special Investigations Unit has invoked its mandate to investigate an OPP-involved shooting death in Morrisburg on Saturday.

The SIU did not immediately provide details of the incident, however on Sunday they identified the man as Babak Saidi, 43, from Iroquois.

The investigative agency said one subject officer and 10 witness officers have been identified and will be interviewed as part of the investigation. A post-mortem is scheduled to happen in Ottawa on Wednesday.

In a news release late Saturday afternoon, the SIU said preliminary information indicated a man entered the OPP detachment at 6 Fifth Street W. at about noon.

“There was an interaction between the man and officers and one of the officers discharged a firearm,” the SIU release states.

“The man was struck. He was pronounced dead at the scene.”

The agency dispatched four investigators and three forensic investigators to the incident.

The SIU asked that anyone with information contact the lead investigator at 1-800-787-8529. Anyone with video is asked to upload it on the SIU website.

The SIU investigates incidents involving police and civilians that involve serious injury, death or allegations of sexual assault.

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SIU investigating fatal shooting at OPP detachment

Postby Thomas » Wed Dec 27, 2017 3:35 am

MORRISBURG (Staff) — The province’s Special Investigations Unit invoked its mandate to investigate an OPP shooting death in Morrisburg on the weekend.

The shooting occurred on Saturday, and a Postmedia report out of Ottawa on Sunday said the SIU did not immediately provide details of the incident, however it did identify the man killed as Babak Saidi, 43, of Iroquois.

The investigative agency said one subject officer and 10 witness officers have been identified and will be interviewed as part of the investigation. A post-mortem is scheduled to happen in Ottawa on Wednesday.

CBC News on Saturday afternoon reported that Saidi had schizophrenia, and that he was required to check in weekly at the Morrisburg OPP detachment after his 2014 conviction for assault and battery, according to his sister Elly Saidi.

“My brother, he was the kindest, sweetest, most loving person,’’ Elly Saidi told CBC News. “He had a mental disability, and we need to know how to deal with a person with mental disability.’’

Elly Saidi said her brother had been visiting the detachment without any incident until this weekend, when everything went horribly wrong.

Elly Saidi said that Babak was picked up for the trip to Morrisburg by his father and a friend, at his farm near Cardinal. Recounting her father’s version of events, Elly Saidi said that when they arrived at the police station in Morrisburg, they were told to wait about 15 minutes. They went to do some grocery shopping and when they came back, Babak Saidi got out of the car to go inside.

Elly Saidi told the CBC that the next thing her father saw was Babak on the ground, with two officers on top of him.

She said Babak was taken into the detachment, and within a couple of minutes her father heard two shots ring out.

Elly Saidi said that a police officer told her father and his friend to go and wait at a nearby Tim Hortons, and that someone would come by to explain what happened.

“They waited for a few hours, and then the police came,’’ she said. “My dad asked the police, ‘Where is my son?’ And the police officer told my dad that, sorry, your son is gone.’’

The Ontario Special Investigations Unit in a mid-afternoon tweet on Saturday said it was investigating a police-involved fatal shooting at the Morrisburg SDG OPP detachment.

About an hour later the OPP’s corporate communications office released a statement at 4:14 p.m. indicating that an OPP officer was involved in an altercation with an adult male outside the OPP detachment shortly after 11 a.m. on Saturday.

The news release said that preliminary information indicated a man entered the OPP detachment at 6 Fifth Street W. at about noon.

“There was an interaction between the man and officers and one of the officers discharged a firearm,’’ the SIU release stated. “The man was struck. He was pronounced dead at the scene.’’

The agency dispatched four investigators and three forensic investigators to the incident.

The SIU asked that anyone with information contact the lead investigator at 1-800-787-8529. Anyone with video is asked to upload it on the SIU website.

The OPP statement on Saturday said the adult male sustained fatal injuries and was pronounced dead at the scene, and that the officer involved was being treated for undetermined injuries.

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Re: SIU probing fatal police-involved shooting at OPP detach

Postby Thomas » Thu Feb 01, 2018 3:40 pm

Babak Saidi was dropped off at OPP detachment for routine probation check-in — minutes later he was shot dead

Two days before Christmas, Babak Saidi’s father dropped off his schizophrenic son outside the Morrisburg OPP detachment for a routine probation check-in. Minutes later, the 43-year-old was shot and killed by an OPP officer.

The details of his killing have gone largely unexplained as the province’s police watchdog investigates the case.

And while Saidi’s family waits for answers, they’re calling for better training for officers who deal with the mentally ill.

Saidi had a lengthy criminal record that included a string of convictions for drug trafficking, dangerous driving and assault. He had been in and out of jail for most of his adult life.

Elly Saidi said her brother, who had been diagnosed with late onset schizophrenia and social paranoia, was trying to remake his life on a farm near Iroquois, Ont., at the time of his death.

“This is yet another shocking example of a lethal police response to an unarmed person with mental health disabilities,” Saidi said. “I want everyone to learn from this tragic experience.”

Babak Saidi’s death occurred less than two years after Abdirahman Abdi, 37, an immigrant from Somalia with mental health issues, died in a confrontation with Ottawa police. Const. Daniel Montsion has been charged with manslaughter, aggravated assault and assault with a weapon. He’s to go on trial in February 2019.

Saidi’s death is being investigated by the provincial police watchdog, the Special Investigations Unit, which has assigned four investigators and three forensic specialists to the case.

A lone subject officer has been designated. That means that SIU investigators believe only one OPP officer fired the shots, or shot, that struck and killed Saidi.

That officer has not been publicly identified.

The circumstances of Saidi’s death remain unexplained. What is known is that Saidi’s 83-year-old father, Mehrab, dropped him off for his probation check-in late on the morning of Dec. 23. Moments later, Saidi had some kind of altercation with an officer outside the detachment and was shot. He was later pronounced dead on scene.

Mehrab Saidi heard “multiple gunshots” while in his car, Elly Saidi said, and was instructed by police to wait at a nearby coffee shop for more information. Hours later, he was told of his son’s death.

Saidi’s family remains in the dark about why his routine check-in at the police station suddenly turned deadly. “It would be good to get an explanation for what happened,” said Elly Saidi. “I don’t know what instigated it: Why this time was so different than every other time?”

Her brother, she said, had gone to the same OPP station more than 30 times — every week for nine months — without incident in 2017.

Elly Saidi is chief executive of United World Voices, a registered charity in Ottawa that works with homeless youth and vulnerable women. She said her brother was diagnosed with schizophrenia early last year after the family pushed to have him assessed by a psychiatrist as part of a court proceeding.

The family had long believed that his criminality was fuelled by mental illness, but had never been able to get him diagnosed.

“We told lawyers for many years he needs help,” she said. “Like a lot of people in his position, they fall through the cracks. He should have been assessed and treated much earlier. We knew there was something wrong with him, but it was hard to get anyone to listen. That’s the frustrating part.”

Babak Saidi was born in Iran. His family, members of the persecuted Baha’i Faith community, fled the country while he was still a child after the Iranian revolution in 1979. They earned refugee status in Canada in 1985 and settled in Brockville.

Saidi went to Brockville Collegiate Institute, but struggled with attention deficit disorder and dropped out in Grade 10. He later developed a drug habit, which led him into the local drug trade.

He became a notorious figure in Brockville.

Saidi almost died in February 2000 when he was shot in the stomach by a man seeking revenge for an assault on his daughter. The shotgun blast peppered Saidi’s abdomen with 80 pellets and led to the removal of one of his kidneys.

Saidi was arrested in his hospital bed and charged with drug possession for the purpose of trafficking — cocaine and cash were found in his pockets — and assaulting a woman. He was sentenced to 22 months in jail for those offences.

Saidi felt harassed by the police. In one 2003 court hearing, a 29-year-old Saidi told a judge that police in Brockville “have been on my ass for 10 years.”

“They don’t like me and I don’t like them,” he told Ontario Court Justice Charles Anderson.

Elly Saidi said that while she doesn’t know what happened at the Morrisburg OPP detachment, she does know that her brother should not have died in the encounter.

“What is beyond doubt is that OPP members involved in this tragedy were unable to peacefully de-escalate this situation,” she said. “The OPP resorted to a lethal response to an unarmed individual with mental disabilities.”

She said the family wants the OPP to introduce comprehensive, mandatory training programs to better equip officers to deal with the mentally ill.

“I know that things can escalate from zero to 100 in a few seconds with mentally ill people,” she said. “The police need to know how to deal with that, how to de-escalate and contain the situation.”

The OPP did not respond to a request for comment on that suggestion.

In November 2015, the OPP published a report, Our People, Our Communities, which highlighted the increasing importance of mental health issues in policing. It said the OPP experienced a 42 per cent increase in calls for service related to mental health issues between 2007 and 2013. The service now handles more than 12,000 such calls each year.

In 2016, the OPP introduced a mandatory, half-day training session on de-escalation techniques for all uniformed officers. Last year, front-line officers received another half-day of training on mental illness and de-escalation.

“While there is more to be done, important strides have been made,” OPP Commissioner Vince Hawkes said recently. “This is, in large part, due to our members’ genuine desire to improve dealings with those who are going through a mental health crisis.”

Statistics compiled last year by Ontario’s Office of the Independent Police Review Director revealed that 142 people were fatally shot during interactions with police between January 1990 and December 2016.

“In many of these cases, the person shot by police was ‘in crisis,’” wrote police review director Gerry McNeilly in a March 2017 report.

That report reviewed recommendations made by 32 coroner’s inquests in Ontario during the past two decades and concluded: “Improved training for police officers focusing on identifying the symptoms of a person in crisis, containment, communication and de-escalation rather than the use of force has been recommended repeatedly.”

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OPP officer who shot and killed mentally ill man will not fa

Postby Thomas » Wed Feb 20, 2019 9:39 am

OPP officer who shot and killed mentally ill man will not face charges, SIU says

Ontario’s police watchdog says no charges will be filed against an Ontario Provincial Police officer over the 2017 shooting death of Babak Saidi, a mentally ill man who died in police custody in Morrisburg, Ont.

In its report on the shooting, the province’s Special Investigations Unit on Tuesday said the officer who shot Saidi had exhausted non-lethal options to subdue the man and justifiably “believed that he was at risk of death or grievous bodily harm at the time that he discharged his firearm.”

Saidi, who had schizophrenia, was shot on Dec. 23, 2017, after his father and a family friend dropped him off for a mandatory check-in at the OPP detachment in Morrisburg, about 80 kilometres south of Ottawa.

The 43-year-old’s father, Mehrab Saidi, 84, witnessed his son’s death, according to Saidi’s family.

According to the SIU report, officers had attempted to arrest Babak Saidi at the police station after becoming aware of a criminal complaint against him that occurred three days earlier.

Saidi regularly attended the Morrisburg detachment every Saturday for court-ordered check-ins stemming from a 2014 assault conviction, his family told the Star last year.

After two officers told Saidi he would be placed under arrest, he began to walk away out of the detachment, the SIU report said. The offers then attempted to stop him from leaving.

When Saidi again pulled away, the three of them fell through the detachment’s exit door onto the pavement outside, the report said.

In the struggle, one officer struck Saidi several times in an attempt to subdue him, the report said. That officer, who also received a laceration to his head, then used his Taser on Saidi, but it appeared to have no effect.

The report said Saidi then managed to grab hold of the Taser and discharged it a second time.

The same officer then unholstered his gun and shot Saidi five times, killing him.

The confrontation was captured by the detachment’s surveillance video, the report said.

Saidi’s family had been waiting for more than a year to hear the SIU’s account of the shooting.

His sister, Elly Saidi, late last year told the Star her brother, who lived on a farm in Iroquois, Ont., was the “kindest, sweetest, most loving person,” despite his struggles with mental illness.

She said police at the Morrisburg OPP were aware of her brother’s mental illnesses should have been more prepared to de-escalate the confrontation.

“I didn’t want my brother’s death to be another waste of life,” she said in December. “Nothing is going to bring him back, but what are we learning from this experience? That’s really what I would like to emphasize.”

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No charges for OPP officer in shooting death of man in Morri

Postby Thomas » Wed Feb 20, 2019 9:40 am

Ontario's police watchdog will not charge a provincial police officer in the shooting death of a man at the Morrisburg detachment.

The incident happened back in December of 2017.

Babak Saidi, 43, died after he was shot five times.

Eight investigators were assigned to the probe, interviewing a dozen officers,and reviewing the notes of over a dozen more. Another 11 civilian witnesses were interviewed in the case.

According to the Special Investigations Unit, police planned to arrest Saidi on a criminal complaint, the day he was shot.

The 43-year-old was required to check in with police every week following a 2014 assault and battery conviction, and officers informed him at his weekly sign-in that he was under arrest. When he tried to walk away, one officer grabbed his arm to stop him. Saidi fought with two OPP members, and was hit with a taser, which appeared to have no effect. The officer then shot Saidi.

In rendering his decision, SIU Director Tony Loparco said the CCTV footage at the detachment was "critical" in understanding what happened.

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No charges for officer involved in fatal shooting at OPP det

Postby Thomas » Wed Feb 20, 2019 9:55 am

No charges for officer involved in fatal shooting at OPP detachment

Babak Saidi, 43, was shot to death at the Morrisburg, Ont., OPP detachment in 2017

Ontario's police watchdog has concluded there are no reasonable grounds to lay criminal charges against an officer who shot and killed a 43-year-old man at an OPP detachment in Morrisburg, Ont.

Babak Saidi, 43, was killed at the Morrisburg OPP detachment on Dec. 23, 2017, while reporting for his required weekly check-in after a 2014 conviction for assault and battery.

According to the Special Investigations Unit's (SIU) report, Saidi died less than two minutes after entering the detachment.

"The objective of the investigation was to determine what happened in the intervening 105 seconds between [Saidi's] entry into the detachment and the shooting of [Saidi]," according to the report, released Monday.

Told he was under arrest

When Saidi entered the OPP Morrisburg detachment to sign the register, he was informed he was under arrest for new criminal charges.

A few days before the fatal altercation, police had received a complaint claiming Saidi had confronted a salesperson outside his home with a small knife.

"The sales representative later told the OPP that [Saidi] had held a knife to her throat and threatened her," said the report.

According to the report, Saidi told officers that he was going outside to tell his father he was being arrested, but police grabbed him, believing he was trying to flee.

Struggle over Taser

A struggle broke out between Saidi and two police officers. "That caused all three parties to fall through the exit door and out onto the paved area in front of the detachment, where the struggle continued," according to the report.

One of the officers, who received a cut to his head after being struck with his portable radio, struck Saidi several times in an attempt to restrain him. When he was unable to do so, the officer deployed his Taser, but it didn't appear to have an effect on Saidi.

According to the SIU, Saidi managed to grab a hold of the Taser and it was discharged a second time.

Fearing that Saidi would overpower him, the officer unholstered his firearm, and when Saidi continued to come toward him, the officer shot Saidi five times.

The post-mortem report found that Saidi died as a result of three of those gunshot wounds: two that entered through the right side of his upper back and one in the back of his right shoulder.

The SIU investigates incidents involving police where there has been death, serious injury or allegations of sexual assault.

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SIU find OPP not criminally responsible for Babak Saidi shoo

Postby Thomas » Wed Feb 20, 2019 9:56 am

MORRISBURG, Ontario – Babak Saidi, 43, was shot and killed at the Morrisburg OPP detachment office on Saturday, Dec. 23, 2017. Saidi was at the detachment to sign-in as was required under his court-ordered conditions.

While he attended the detachment he became involved in a struggle with one officer and in the course of that struggle, he was shot five times. Efforts were made to save Saidi’s life, but he was pronounced dead at the scene.

The Special Investigation Unit (SIU) has been investigating the case since then and on Tuesday, Feb. 19 they released their report in which they found the Subject Officer (SO) not criminally responsible for the death of Saidi.

The SIU explained that the OPP officers intended to arrest Saidi when he attended the attachment for his scheduled sign in. The OPP had received a complaint from the member of the public against Saidi. The complainant against Saidi alleged that while at his home on Dec. 20, 2017, Saidi witnessed a sales representative for an agricultural feed company depositing flyers in his mailbox. Not knowing the sales representatives vehicle, he ran outside with a knife and allegedly threatened the sales representative with the knife to her throat.

Upon arriving at the OPP detachment on Dec. 23 at around 11 a.m. Saidi was informed by SO#1 and Witnessing Officer #6 (WO#6) that he would be arrested.

According to SIU Director Tony Loparco’s report, once inside the detachment the SO informed Saidi that he was to be arrested. Saidi acknowledged that the incident with the sales representative had occurred, but denied that it was his fault. Saidi then said he had to inform his father that he was being arrested and turned to go outside.

The SO attempted to prevent Saidi from leaving, a struggle ensued and continued when the two men moved from inside the building to outside the detachment.

In the course of the struggle, the SO attempted to restrain Saidi with an arm around Saidi’s chest, Saidi then allegedly bit the officer. The SO and Saidi then fell to the ground at which time Saidi was struck in the head and suffered a cut to his head, likely cause by the SO’s portable radio. The SO then fired one cartridge from his Conductive Energy Weapon (CEW – taser) which struck Saidi in the chest. Saidi continued to struggle and managed to gain control of the SO’s CEW.

The SO then backed away from Saidi and drew his firearm. Saidi sat up and according to the SIU report, then grabbed the officer’s weapon with his left hand. The SO was able to pull his firearm away and then discharged his weapon five times, hitting Saidi in the front right shoulder once, the back twice, his back right shoulder once and his thigh. Three of the gunshot woulds proved to be fatal.

The SIU assigned eight of it’s members to investigate this case. The SIU spoke to or received witness notes from 29 Witnessing Officers and interviewed 11 Civilian Witnesses. The SIU also reviewed CCTV footage that recorded the portion of the incident that took place outside the detachment building, radio communications between police officers and between paramedics. Additional evidence included an autopsy of Saidi and a DNA sample that was voluntarily given by the SO.

Director Loparco conclude’s his lengthy report by explaining why he feels that the SO’s actions were justified.

“I find in all the circumstances that the SO reasonably believed that his life was in danger from the Complainant and thus his actions in firing upon the Complainant were justified,” the report reads. “I find that it would have been foolish and reckless for the SO to risk losing his life by waiting for the Complainant to either again discharge the CEW, or to disarm him of his firearm, thereby putting his own life at immediate risk of serious injury or death. I further find that risk was not one that the SO ought to have had to take when faced with this very violent and unpredictable assailant.”

“I find, therefore, on this record, that the shots that were fired by the SO, which struck and killed the Complainant, were justified pursuant to ss.25 (1) and (3) of the Criminal Code and that the SO, in preserving himself or others from death or grievous bodily harm from the Complainant, used no more force than was necessary to affect his lawful purpose,” Loparco’s report goes on to read. “As such, I am therefore satisfied on reasonable grounds on this record that the actions exercised by the SO, despite the tragic loss of life, fell within the limits prescribed by the criminal law and there are no grounds for proceeding with criminal charges in this case.”

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Coroner's inquest to probe fatal shooting at OPP detachment

Postby Thomas » Tue Mar 19, 2019 10:45 am

A coroner's inquest will be held into the death of a man who died after being shot outside an eastern Ontario OPP detachment more than a year ago.

Babak Saidi was killed on Dec. 23, 2017 after reporting to the Morrisburg OPP detachment for his weekly, mandatory check-in — a condition of a previous assault conviction.

Saidi's sister, Elly Saidi, who's been calling for an inquest, said her family is pleased her brother's death will be further investigated, and that the inquest could yield recommendations aimed at preventing similar incidents.

"It brought tears to my eyes," she said. "It's a sense of relief that my brother's death is not a waste of a life."

Saidi said the inquest could help police officers handle situations involving people like her brother, who grappled with schizophrenia and social paranoia.

"It's so easy for someone who's sort of struggling with severe mental health issues for things to escalate," she said.

"I'm hoping that from this inquest we can come to a better understanding of how to deescalate an issue ... [and] what kind of police procedures and processes can be put in place that gives them better tools to deal with people with mental health illness."

No charges against officer

In February, Ontario's police watchdog concluded there were no reasonable grounds to lay criminal charges against the police officer who shot and killed Babak Saidi during a scuffle outside the Morrisburg detachment.

The supervising coroner for eastern Ontario, Dr. Louise McNaughton-Filion, said she cannot comment directly about the inquest because it has not been formally announced.

"Coroners investigations are confidential until they go to inquest," she said. "So during the time of preparation of an investigation, and as we learn more and more about a case, we communicate with families because that's part of our role. But making a public announcement or explaining the details of any specific investigation, we really can't do that."

McNaughton-Filion said that prepping for the inquest could take months or more.

"It can take more than a year to prepare for an inquest, depending on the complexity," she said.

"You want to be thorough. You want to do it right and you want to make sure at the end, if there are recommendations that come out, they've been based on the evidence that's been presented. So we need to make sure that we have all the evidence that is required."

"Nothing will bring my brother back," Elly Saidi said. "But it is my hope, and our wish, that it will be a learning experience for everyone involved."

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