The Independent Investigation Unit of Manitoba (IIU) has concluded its investigation into injuries from a “ess lethal” firearm used by a Winnipeg Police Services (WPS) officer during a confrontation in Winnipeg back in February of 2021.

On May 17, 2021, WPS reported an incident to the IIU that occurred on February 19 on Lorne Avenue in Winnipeg. According to this notification, WPS officers responded to a call for service at a residence. When officers attended the residence, a female was located brandishing what appeared to be a firearm and scissors. The female refused to comply with requests to drop the weapons. A less lethal firearm was deployed and the female was taken into custody. The female was treated for bruising and a minor laceration.

As any injury related to the deployment of the less lethal firearm meets the definition of a serious injury pursuant to the Police Services Act (PSA) and regulations, this matter was a mandatory investigation for the IIU. IIU investigators were assigned to this investigation.

The civilian director designated one WPS officer as a subject officer. Four WPS officers were designated and interviewed as witness officers. IIU investigators also met with and interviewed the affected person (AP) and one civilian witness.

In addition, WPS file material and other information obtained by IIU investigators included:

  • officers’ notes and narrative reports
  • call history
  • audio of 911 telephone calls
  • photographs of AP
  • photographs of less lethal firearm
  • Forensic Identification Reports
  • medical reports for AP
  • WPS Use of Force Report

Based on the various witness accounts and other information obtained in this investigation, the civilian director found that the less lethal force option was used to de-escalate a potentially dangerous situation and its use was necessary, reasonable and in compliance with Section 25 of the Criminal Code of Canada. The civilian director concluded that he was not satisfied that reasonable grounds exist to charge the subject officer and no charges will be authorized against him.