Public Complaints Commission to review police-related crash

Review started into death of innocent driver on 16 Avenue in Langley last October

The Commission for Public Complaints Against the RCMP has initiated a review into the circumstances surrounding a fatal crash involving a short police chase that resulted in an innocent driver being killed on 16 Avenue last October.

On Oct. 29, 2012, Langley RCMP attempted to apprehend a pickup truck that had been flagged as a prohibited driver.

As officers attempted to stop the truck, the driver fled the scene and three minutes later collided with two other unrelated vehicles.

A 47-year-old Delta father in one of the unrelated vehicles died as a result of the collision.

The Independent Investigations Office (IIO) of B.C. conducted an investigation into the actions of the RCMP members involved in the incident and concluded that there was no evidence that any police officer committed an offence related to the collision.

In their report, it showed that police only pursued the suspect for 36 seconds before abandoning the chase.

In cases where an independent investigative unit, such as the IIO, has completed a criminal investigation in respect of a serious incident, the Commission also has a role in examining the conduct of RCMP members involved.

“By examining the conduct of RCMP members involved in serious incidents, the Commission provides an added level of scrutiny to ensure such conduct is reasonable and policies and procedures are adequate,” said Richard Evans, the Commission’s senior director of operations.

A 27-year-old Chilliwack man was arrested at the scene. No charges have been filed against him yet. He was seriously injured in the crash where it is believed, but not confirmed, that he blew the stop sign.

This was the first investigation in Langley conducted by the IIO. They took over investigating police-related deaths several months ago. Prior to that, police conducted their own investigations.