SIU clears up police in London, Ontario after a person was critically injured whereas leaping from a balcony of their London condominium


The provincial police guard cleared the London police of any wrongdoing after a 21-year-old man jumped and fell four floors from the balcony of his King Street apartment while interacting with officers last year.

Police responded to the scene in an apartment building on the 700 block of King Street at around 11:20 a.m. on September 24, 2020.

According to the SIU, the police there had been called by the 21-year-old applicant who said another man, 22, was in his apartment on the eighth floor in violation of the conditions of not being there.

Two officers arrived 13 minutes later and were allowed into the unit by the complainant. The SIU notes were sobbing heard by the officers before they entered.

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Original story – SIU investigates to London, Ontario, man falls from balcony of King Street apartment

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When the officers learned that the 22-year-old man had an arrest warrant for him, they took the man into custody and asked the applicant to stop crying. They said the two were reconciled, that he didn’t want the other man to be arrested, and that he thought the police would give him the opportunity to explain this change in circumstances, the SIU says.

When the two officers began to lead the 22-year-old out of the unit, one officer asked the complainant if he was okay. The complainant replied that this was the case and the police continued to escort the other man out of the house.

At around 11:45 a.m. after the officers left, the SIU said the applicant tried to commit suicide by jumping from his balcony on the eighth floor. The man fell four floors before landing on a ledge on the fourth floor and breaking his pool. He was later taken to the London Health Sciences Center in critical but stable condition.

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In his ruling, SIU Director Joseph Martino said that when the man fell – one arrived later and was outside – the three officers at the scene “were in no way physically responsible for the applicant’s fall”.

Martino says that as far as possible criminal liability is concerned, the question revolves around whether the officers did not act, which led to the injuries or contributed to the injuries suffered by the complainant, “and if so, whether these failures be prosecuted. ”

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The offense, says Martino, would be criminal negligence that causes bodily harm.

“This crime is based in part on behavior that is a marked and significant departure from the standard of care that a reasonable person would have exercised in the circumstances,” he writes.

“In my view, there is not enough evidence to conclude that the officers present at the applicant’s home to arrest him (the 22-year-old) exceeded the level of care required by criminal law. “

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The officers were not present when the man decided to jump and did not fail to take measures to prevent him from harming himself, Martino said, stressing that an officer asked the complainant if it was him go well.

In addition, Martino said the complainant had never committed suicide or suffered from any mental illness and that his crying alone did not justify officials arresting him for his own protection under the Mental Health Act.

“Simply put, the officers had no reason to believe that the complainant, while annoyed, posed a foreseeable risk to himself or others, and therefore no reason to exercise increased caution about his well-being,” it said Martino says.

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The SIU said it interviewed all three officers and received their notes and interviewed four civilian witnesses, including the man who was in custody.

If you or someone you know is in crisis and needs help, resources are available. In an emergency, please call 911 for immediate assistance.

For a directory of support services in your area, visit the Canadian Association for Suicide Prevention.

Find out more about how you can help someone in a crisis here.

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