(File photo by Maureen Revait, BlackburnNews.com)(File photo by Maureen Revait, BlackburnNews.com)

SIU concludes investigation into Windsor standoff last fall

The province's police watchdog has concluded its investigation into an incident last fall, where a Windsor man was struck by an anti-riot weapon by a city police officer.

According to the Special Investigations Unit (SIU), on the morning of December 1, 2022, police officers and a social worker attended a home near the area of Lauzon Parkway to follow up on a 911 call about a person in distress.

The SIU report claims the Complainant (the man subject of the 911 call), rejected to speak to both the social worker and law enforcement, and he proceeded to hide in the basement of the home and refused to come out.

A standoff then began between the man and police, which reportedly went on for several hours. During the incident, police claim the Complainant broke windows and threw items out of them. Police also claim he stated that he had a firearm, and threatened to harm himself and set fire to the house.

After some negotiation, the 42-year-old man opened the door to retrieve a carton of cigarettes brought to him. When he fully came outside, an officer fired his less-lethal firearm, a Penn Arms 40 millimetre projectile launcher that discharged a foam-tipped round at the man.

The projectile struck the Complainant in the left leg, which is when officers rushed the Complainant and arrested him without further incident.

The man was not seriously hurt during the altercation, but the SIU mandate was invoked because the Anti-Riot Weapon Enfield (ARWEN) is classified as a firearm.

SIU Director Joseph Martino has ended the investigation into the incident, clearing the officer who fired the ARWEN of any wrongdoing.

"The Complainant was in crisis at the time of the events under investigation. He had threatened his mother, damaged household property, and indicated a willingness to harm himself," read Martino's report. "He was clearly subject to apprehension under provisions of the Criminal Code and Mental Health Act."

Martino added that the officer comported himself within the legal limits of the law when he discharged the firearm. The file has since been closed.

The full version of the report can be read on the SIU's website.

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