Ontario’s police watchdog has ended its investigation into the actions of a Port Hope police officer who was injured by a ricocheting bullet after shooting at a stolen vehicle in a McDonald’s restaurant drive through this past summer.
Officers were initially dispatched to the drive through on Rose Glen Road just before 5 p.m. on July 30 after police received information that a stolen vehicle and a wanted man were present at the location.
The SIU says that officers attempted to arrest the 29-year-old driver by “blocking him in with their vehicles and directing him to turn off the engine.”
However, the SIU says that the suspect attempted to flee and as he did an officer “took aim at the driver’s side wheel and shot her firearm.”
The bullet then ricocheted off the wheel and struck the officer in the face, the SIU said.
Police have previously said that the officer was taken to hospital and treated and released on the same day.
The suspect was later arrested and charged with four offences, including flight from police.
The SIU were initially investigating but in a news release issued on Thursday, Director Joseph Martino confirmed that the matter falls outside of their jurisdiction.
The SIU investigation has been discontinued as a result.
“Based on video footage and utterances made by another officer in the immediate aftermath of the shooting, it established the officer fired in the direction of the wheel, not the driver. As such, it does not appear that the matter falls within the SIU’s statutory jurisdiction,” Martino said.
In a separate statement, the Port Hope Police Service said that it will review the incident “in its entirety.”
The police service added that the wellness of the officer has been its “priority” to date.
“The support from all members of the Port Hope Police Service will continue,” the statement notes. “Policing is an extremely challenging profession, and our officers are faced with split second decisions based on previous experiences as well as their training.”