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HRP Officer Acted Appropriately in Pursuit
The province's independent Serious Incident Response Team (SiRT) today released its report regarding an investigation into a June 11, 2015 vehicle pursuit conducted by a member of the Halifax Regional Police in Herring Cove.
At approximately 11:30 p.m. that date an HRP officer observed a vehicle parked at the “look-off” in Herring Cove. When he attempted to check the car, it sped off along the main road toward Herring Cove. With his emergency equipment activated, the officer attempted to pull the car over. However, it continued at a high rate of speed, estimated at over 100 km/h, for about 700 metres before the driver lost control of the vehicle. It crashed into a ditch, hit a culvert, and flipped on its roof. There were five persons in the vehicle. Only one, a 14-year-old female, suffered serious injuries, including fractures to her ribs, back and pelvis. The car had been stolen from Antigonish a few days earlier.
The driver was found guilty of impaired driving causing bodily harm, dangerous driving, flight from an officer, and possession of stolen property. He was sentenced to 196 days in custody and two years of probation.
The investigation showed the officer was acting appropriately in attempting to pull over a car that had acted suspiciously and was exceeding the speed limit. While the speed of the pursuit was somewhat high, it was very short, and late at night on a rural road. In the circumstances the actions of the officer were justified, and there are no grounds to consider any charges.
A complete copy of the report is available at http://sirt.novascotia.ca.
SIRT is responsible for investigating all serious incidents involving police in Nova Scotia. Investigations are under the direction and control of independent civilian director Ron MacDonald, who is solely responsible for decisions respecting the laying of any charge.
Ron MacDonald, QC