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SIU continue investigation into fatal Kawartha Lakes incident

DAN CEARNS, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, for The Standard

KAWARTHA LAKES: The Ontario Special Investigations Unit (SIU) recently provided an update into their investigation of an incident which occurred in late November in Kawartha Lakes, where a young boy was killed and an Ontario Provincial Police (OPP) officer was injured.

On Friday, January 15th, the SIU stated, the investigation, “into the circumstances of an incident that resulted in the deaths of a one-year-old boy and his 33-year-old father, is ongoing.”

“Both sustained gunshot wounds, on November 26th, 2020 in the City of Kawartha Lakes, in the course of an interaction between the father and Ontario Provincial Police officers. The child was pronounced deceased at the scene, and the father succumbed to his injuries almost one week later,” an SIU press release read.

Postmortems on the father and son were conducted, in late November and early December, and the SIU state they are waiting on those reports.

In the meantime, SIU officials have been talking to OPP officers.

“To date, 18 witness officers and 14 civilian witnesses have been interviewed. The three subject officers, who were designated as such, on the basis of information they each discharged their firearm in the course of the incident, have not as yet availed themselves of an opportunity to be interviewed. Subject officers are under no legal obligation to speak with the SIU but may if they choose to do so,” the SIU press release explained.

The SIU is also looking at all firearms, which were at the scene of the incident.

“From the scene, two police-issued rifles and one police-issued pistol were collected. A pistol was also located in the pickup truck occupied by the boy and his father. All four firearms and a number of spent cartridge cases are with the Centre of Forensic Sciences (CFS) for examination.”

An earlier SIU release stated, the incident occurred when “the Ontario Provincial Police (OPP) were made aware a father had abducted his son from the Municipality of Trent Lakes.”

Officers then located “a pickup truck, in the City of Kawartha Lakes, on Sturgeon Road.”

“On Pigeon Lake Road, the truck became involved in a collision with an OPP cruiser and a civilian vehicle. At that time, an OPP officer was standing outside of the cruiser and he sustained serious injuries.

An interaction ensued, between the 33-year-old vehicle driver and officers, and three officers discharged their firearms. The man was struck and airlifted to the hospital in grave condition. Inside the pickup truck was a one-year-old boy. He had sustained a gunshot wound and was pronounced deceased at the scene,” read the SIU press release.

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