SIU ends investigation into fatal motorcycle collision in Whitby

The investigation into police involvement in a fatal motorcycle collision near Whitby in June has been terminated.

The Interim Director of the Special Investigations Unit (SIU) says a Durham Regional Police Service (DRPS) officer “had little, if anything” to do with a fatal collision that occurred at the Highway 12 exit of Highway 407.

At approximately 5 p.m. on June 29, 2019, a 28-year-old man was reportedly operating a motorcycle at high speeds while travelling east on Highway 407.

According to the SIU, the man approached the highway’s intersection with Salem Road, he was clocked traveling at 157 kilometres per hour by a DRPS officer who was conducting speed enforcement at the time. The motorcyclist allegedly sped past the officer and continued east toward Highway 12 where he attempted to exit the highway.

The SIU says the motorcyclist lost control and crashed into the concrete barrier lining the left side of the Highway 12 exit ramp. The man was pronounced dead at the scene.

The officer, who had begun to follow in the direction of the motorcycle after it passed him, quickly lost sight of the motorcycle and was nowhere near it at the time of the collision, according to the SIU.

“On the aforementioned record, it is evident that the officer had little, if anything, to do with the collision.  In fact, learning of the collision after it occurred, he arrived at the scene after the fire department and paramedics,” says Interim Director Joseph Martino.

“The man’s reckless speed, apparent before the officer had observed him, appears to have been the sole cause of his death. Consequently, as I am satisfied there is patently nothing to further investigate as far as the officer’s potential criminal liability is concerned, the investigation is hereby discontinued and the file closed.”

The SIU is an arm’s length agency that investigates reports involving police where there has been death, serious injury or allegations of sexual assault. Under the Police Services Act, the Director of the SIU must:

  • consider whether an officer has committed a criminal offence  in connection with the incident under investigation
  • depending on the evidence, lay a criminal charge against the officer if appropriate or close the file without any charges being laid
  • report the results of any investigations to the Attorney General.
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