CP24 - Toronto News | Breaking News Headlines | Weather, Traffic, Sports
SIU secures video from Regis Korchinski-Paquet’s building, family interviews pending
Regis Korchinski-Paquet, 29, is shown in an image from her Facebook page.
Published Monday, June 1, 2020 4:09PM EDT
Last Updated Wednesday, June 3, 2020 3:34PM EDT
The province’s Special Investigations Unit says it has viewed and saved surveillance camera footage from the building where 29-year-old Regis Korchinski-Paquet fell to her death in High Park last week.
Family of Korchinski-Paquet told CP24 she was suffering a mental health crisis on the night of May 27, in her apartment at 100 High Park Avenue, north of Bloor Street.
Toronto police said they received three calls to attend the residence, and that two of those calls mentioned the possibility that someone had a knife.
Korchinski-Paquet’s mother, Claudette Beals-Clayton, told reporters she wanted police to diffuse the situation and then take her daughter to the Centre for Addiction and Mental Health so she could get help.
There is not a lot of information about what happened next but at some point Korchinski-Paquet asked to go to the washroom inside her apartment and was followed in by several officers, according to her mother and brother, who were told to wait in the building’s hallway.
The two said they heard someone cry for help from the apartment.
Korchinski-Paquet fell to her death a short time later.
The provincial Special Investigations Unit is now probing what occurred after police arrived at the apartment.
Korchinski-Paquet’s mother and brother say they believe police had something to do with the woman’s fatal fall.
On Saturday, thousands marched through Toronto demanding justice for Korchinski-Paquet, a gymnast who often volunteered at her church.
On Monday the SIU said that apart from the video footage and interviews with the six officers who attended her apartment, they’ve also completed four interviews with civilian witnesses.
They also plan to speak to Korchinski-Paquet’s mother and brother sometime this week.
Lawyer for the family, Knia Singh, told CP24 Tuesday that he hopes whatever the outcome of the SIU investigation, that Toronto police adjust the way they respond to calls involving people suffering crises.
"If it requires sending a person trained in negotiations out to every domestic or call involving a person in distress that may have to happen – because we can’t have eight officers show up and then perhaps maybe none of them is trained in mental health, because de-escalation is always preferred to use of force," Singh said.
"I just hope our police service learns that they have to take more care when interacting with the public."
In its release, the SIU said it appreciates the public interest in the case, but added that it also has to protect the integrity of the investigation.
“While the investigation is ongoing, the details of the interviews and the video footage will not be released in an effort to ensure the memories of other potential witnesses are not tainted,” the release read.