Fatal Incidents

Item set

Collection Title
Fatal Incidents
Collection Description
Incidents in which one or more persons have died as a result of interactions with police


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  • A photo of a weapon on a brown background alongside a ruler. Something is taped on the barrel, possibly a flashlight.ASIRT investigating a fatal shooting of a man by EPS
    Around 11:15pm on 03/12/2022 , EPS was called to Pleasantview, near 109th Street and 53rd Avenue, regarding a man who had 24 outstanding provincial warrants, as well as a Canada-wide warrant. The EPS Tactical team was called for the arrest. The man was surveilled in a moving vehicle with 2 female passengers and once they arrived at a building near 105 St and 38 Ave and the women were out of the car, the tactical team went in. A confrontation occurred and shots were fired, it is unclear how many officers fired. Tactical Emergency Medical Support (TEMS) was on the scene and attended to him but the man died from his injuries. The name has not been released. ASIRT is now investigating the shooting. The archive team notes that the ASIRT report shows a photo of a 'weapon' found inside the victim's vehicle (see media attachment). Unless it has been modified, this is a paintball gun.
  • A photo of a black-handled hunting knife alongside a ruler, it is approximately 27cm in lengthPolice shoot, kill man during a traffic stop after impaired driving complaints
    At 1 PM on March 9, 2017, Edmonton Police received two 911 calls about an erratic driver. One of the callers followed the offending vehicle they had called about-a blue van- off the Whitemud into a cul-de-sac at Hollands Landing where it came to a halt. By 1:30 Constable Ian Wood-a veteran of six years - was dispatched to the neighbourhood and upon arrival pulled his car in front of a blue Pontiac van and demanded the driver stay in his vehicle. The driver- fifty-five-year-old Vitaly Savin- instead exited the van and according to Wood was swaying back and forth and insisted that he was not drunk after Wood stated that he was (a later test found that his blood-alcohol content was three and a half times the legal limit). Wood then grabbed Savin’s left arm intending to arrest him for impaired driving, but withdrew, stood back, and radioed for other officers to respond when he saw Savin rummaging for something in the van with his right. Wood then ordered Savin to show his hands but instead Savin drew a hunting knife from his car and charged Wood who turned, ran several meters down the icy road, slipped and fell on his back. According to Wood, he shouted at the man to drop his knife, but Savin attempted to stab him. Wood was able to kick Savin away far enough for the constable to draw and shoot his pistol four times, killing the man. Aman Jaggi, the only known witness heard “muttering,” then shouting and then four shots being fired “seconds” afterward. He went outside to talk to Wood who told him that he had pulled Savin over, that he came at him with a hunting life, slipped and “had to shoot him.” Jaggi then filmed other officers who had then arrived who were attempting to resuscitate Savin. A subsequent ASIRT investigation determined Cst. Wood's actions were justified. Savin was a dual citizen of Russia and Canada, and the Russian consulate requested ASIRT investigate whether "Russian racism" was a factor in the shooting. The ASIRT investigation concluded that Savin's background was not a factor in the incident.
  • Man dies after being tasered by police
    On Thursday, October 24, 2013 at 11:09 p.m., members of the Edmonton Police Service came upon an altercation involving a man and a woman in the area of 106A Avenue and 96 Street in Edmonton. The officers grappled with the man, punching, kicking and kneeing him, and trying to get him in a choke hold. One officer pressed a conducted energy weapon against his lower right abdomen and discharged it for five seconds. He fell to the ground but broke off the weapon's probes and stood up. He tried to walk away towards the Mustard Seed Church. The same officer reloaded and fired again, hitting him in the back with a blast that continued for 28 seconds, until after the officers had got the man into handcuffs on the ground. Lying on his stomach, with his hands cuffed behind him, he continued to struggle. More police officers arrived. Emergency Medical Services was called to help removing the Taser darts from him. Face-down on the ground, he was turned slightly so he could breathe more easily. But his eyes began to flutter, he gasped and aspirated fluid. His breathing became rapid and shallow. He was then repositioned so that he was lying on his back, with his hands handcuffed in front of him. At that point he appeared to stop breathing all together. He was taken to the Royal Alexandra Hospital where he was declared brain dead and pronounced dead a week after the altercation with the police on October 30, with cause of death described as "Hypoxic/Ischemic Encephalopathy by the antecedent cause of excited delirium syndrome due to the underlying cause of methamphetamine toxicity" (Public Fatality Inquiry, 2016). A subsequent ASIRT investigation declined to recommend charges and found the officers' actions justified. A Public Fatality Inquiry recommended that "procedures for identifying and dealing with individuals exhibiting symptoms of excited delirium be set out in policies and procedures dealing with the police interaction with all individuals and not limited to those policies and procedures dealing with the use of force", and that police officers be trained to call for emergency medical assistance as soon as they identify that someone is experiencing excited delirium syndrome regardless of the need for police intervention (Public Fatality Inquiry, 2016).
  • Man killed by gunfire during struggle with police
    On May 10, 2009, two police officers confronted Shawn Price and attempted to arrest him for an armed robbery that had occurred minutes before. Price pulled an object from his pocket and threw it on the ground - the object was a crack pipe, which according to some reports the police may have believed was a weapon, causing them to escalate and try to take Price into custody. Price resisted the officers' attempts to handcuff him, and as he wrestled with Constable Horchuk, the other officer Constable Gowin struck him with her baton several times. Price pulled at various elements of Cst Horchuk's uniform before placing his hand on the officer's holstered service pistol. Cst Horchuk yelled to Cst Gowin that Price was "going for my gun". Cst Gowin first shot Price in the back, and when the altercation continued, she shot him again in the chest. As Price and Cst Horchuk continued to struggle on the ground, she placed her foot on Price's head and prepared to fire again, at which time he stopped struggling. (Source: Public Fatality Inquiry). Price's girlfriend, who was a witness to the event, told media that police shot Price when he was already "under control" and on the ground, although another witness claimed Price was standing when he was shot. He was treated on the scene by emergency medical services personnel and taken to hospital where he was pronounced dead. The incident was investigated by ASIRT and was the subject of a Public Fatality Inquiry, both of which found the officers acted appropriately in the situation.
  • A composite image showing two different guns, the top one a real handgun (text label illegible) and the bottom one the black-painted Airsoft pistol held by the victim.Officers kill woman wielding toy gun
    Around 2pm on January 16, 2010, 911 dispatch received a call from Bernadette Auger (48) over a dispute she was having with her adult sons, requesting police presence, but partway into the call Ms. Auger's common-law partner, George Coward, told the dispatcher that Ms. Auger was drunk, and not to send officers, then hung up the phone. Dispatch called the number back and informed Mr. Coward that police were en route. When the two dispatched officers arrived at the walk-up apartment at 119th Avenue and 84th Street, they went inside, where they encountered Ms. Auger on a stair landing, holding what appeared to be a gun (but was later determined to be a toy Airsoft gun painted black). Ms. Auger pointed the "gun" at the officers and followed them down the stairs and outside as they retreated from the building, but went back inside after the officers crouched behind a vehicle to call for assistance. While inside, Ms. Auger called 911 again, and had a conversation with the operator in which she asked to speak to the police outside, apologized, and indicated she had a gun. She then went back outside, where there were now at least 5 police officers including a Dog Master with a police dog. When she came outside, the Dog Master Detective Kassian determined she was not a serious threat and stood from cover to release the dog. Ms. Auger saw him stand up and raised the "gun" in his direction. While the officers called for Ms. Auger to drop the gun, the police dog "got confused" (per the provincial fatality inquiry) and bit another police officer on the leg. In the Fatality Inquiry, the possible reasons given for the dog's confusion were that Ms. Auger was not moving, which is not the scenario police dogs are trained for, and that Ms. Auger was wearing a white t-shirt against the backdrop of snow, so the dog was unable to focus on her. Immediately after Ms. Auger raised the "gun", Detective Kassian raised his own service weapon and shot her in the head. Another officer stationed across the road, Constable Bondarchuk, shot Ms. Auger in the neck simultaneously. Ms. Auger was killed instantly, with both shots occurring near simultaneously. A third and fourth officer attempted to fire on Ms. Auger at the same time but were interrupted by the police dog attack. In the following investigation, it was determined that Ms. Auger was taking several prescription medications for chronic pain and other issues that, combined with alcohol, produced a sedative effect that likely altered her behaviour. Per the Fatality Inquiry, "Mr. Coward, in his interview with the police, believed that Ms. Auger was attempting to commit suicide by forcing the police to shoot her. This opinion is supported by the fact that she had tried to commit suicide in the past, she was under chronic pain due to injuries suffered in the car accident six years before, she sent him away after calling 911 and after knowing that the police were on the way, she knew the toy gun she carried could be confused for a real firearm, she met the police in the stairwell and pointed the gun at the officers, she pursued them down the stairwell, she pursued the officers out of the building, when she couldn’t see them, she called 911 and asked the operator to send the police to her suite, she then pursued the police out of the building again, raising the gun directly at Detective Kassian from a distance of seven meters" (Report to the Minister of Justice and Attorney General Public Fatality Inquiry, January 30, 2013). ASIRT was directed to investigate the incident and in September 2010 issued a finding that the officers acted lawfully and their actions were justified. The decision of the Public Fatality Inquiry held in 2012 was that "In this case, there was nothing that the police could have done differently when faced with these events. Accordingly, there are no recommendations to make for the prevention of similar deaths." Ms. Auger suffered from serious chronic pain and brain damage from a car accident six years before the incident, which were cited as relevant factors in the course of events. Per ASIRT director Clifton Purvis' comment on their findings, police dogs becoming confused and attacking officers is not uncommon in heated situations (Edmonton Journal, Sept 16, 2010).
  • A close-up of a basement apartment window with a bullet hole through the glass. A superman figurine sits inside the windowsill.Innocent man in nearby apartment dead after Edmonton police shoot and kill armed robbery suspect
    Police were called to an armed robbery in the area of 1133 st and 104 ave at approximately 6:25pm. The 36-year-old man fled the liquor store and was found near 105 st and 107 ave at approximately 7:01pm. A confrontation occurred and police discharged their firearms, fatally wounding the man who was declared dead on the scene. A 59-year-old man in the basement suite behind the first victim was also hit by police fire, and was located some time after the shooting. Emergency first aid was provided and he was rushed to hospital by paramedics but died from his injuries. Later investigation of the scene determined that the 36-year-old victim had an imitation firearm. An ASIRT investigation has been opened, and the officers involved taken off active duty. The Archive team will update as this case progresses.
  • Edmonton Police shoot and kill man
    Edmonton police were called at 11:05 pm on June 6, 2021 regarding a weapons complaint outside of a residence. A witness reported seeing standing across the street from his house on the Scott Robertson school grounds holding a knife and another reported seeing a man hide behind a tree on his neighbours property. Two police officers confronted a man on arrival and an officer fired a weapon striking and killing the man, according to the first witness, these gunshots occurred around 11:15pm. The victim was declared dead on the scene by first responders ASIRT was reported to be investigating, but there are no known updates.
  • A PDF document issued by ASIRT with information on the incident and investigationMan fatally shot by EPS after 911 calls reported that he was carrying a gun
    On September 18, 2020, Edmonton City Police were called with reports that a man was carrying a gun in the parking lot of a motel, and later a backyard of a nearby home near 118 Avenue and 69 Street. The man, 48-year-old Marty Powder, was found in the backyard of the house and the premise was surrounded by the police. He was shot multiple times by two officers after an altercation and was declared dead at the scene by EMS. A 12 gauge semi automatic shotgun with a single shell loaded was recovered from the scene and several shotgun shells were found in Powder's pockets. Powder's identity was released by his cousin, Amber Reid as well as several online posts. According to Powder's niece Shelly, it took weeks for his body to be released to his family. ASIRT was reported to be investigating, but no known updates are available.
  • Man fatally shot by police during attempted robbery
    Mike Bronaugh, also known as Mike Grisch, was fatally shot by two Edmonton Police Service officers responding to an armed robbery in progress call at the Canadian Western Bank at South Edmonton Common on December 11, 2012. Police were called around 2 p.m. to the Canadian Western Bank located at 21st Avenue and 99th Street where they found a man in his mid-twenties with a handgun. According to the evidence presented in the subsequent fatality inquiry, Mr. Bronaugh had made an appointment at the branch, but after sitting down with an employee, he demanded cash, then reached into his coat and "told her that she had twenty-eight seconds to produce the money, that he had a gun and would start shooting someone" (2016 Public Fatality Inquiry). The employee told Mr. Bronaugh it would take time to get the money and left to go to the bank's vault. The employee informed her coworkers and manager of the situation, and a supervisor placed a call to 911. When EPS arrived on scene, Mr. Bronaugh walked towards the bank entrance where two officers had entered with weapons drawn. According to an eyewitness and bank employees, Mr. Bronaugh drew a revolver only after the police entered the building. In the summary of evidence received by the fatality inquiry, one eyewitness (another customer in the bank) and the bank employees did not describe whether Mr. Bronaugh raised the gun; one responding police officer, Cst. McCracken, described Mr. Bronaugh as raising his gun toward the other customer and bank employees, while the other officer, A/Sgt Zielie, described Mr. Bronaugh bringing the gun up and appearing to point it at his own head, then turning to face the other people in the bank. Both officers described shouting at Mr. Bronaugh to drop the weapon, then firing their own guns - Cst. McCracken four shots from a rifle and A/Sgt Zielie two from a pistol, all of which struck Mr. Bronaugh. Mr. Bronaugh was taken to hospital and treated for his injuries, but died the following day with a medical cause of death "Multiple gunshot wounds". Although security camera footage from the incident was presented as evidence in the fatality inquiry, the report does not describe the footage or clarify the contradicting statements on where Mr. Bronaugh pointed the gun once the officers entered the bank. In a media interview with the Edmonton Sun, Mr. Bronaugh's mother stated she believed he was in the process of raising his hands above his head to surrender. Hospital records submitted to the inquiry for Mr. Bronaugh indicated he was receiving treatment for cancer and having seizures but did not indicate mental health concerns; in a media interview with CBC, Mr. Bronaugh's father stated that he was suffering depression and may have wanted the police to shoot him. In the fatality inquiry, A/Sgt Zielie stated that his decision to park his marked police cruiser in front of the bank window would not have been the appropriate practice had he known that Mr. Bronaugh was still inside the bank, which he believed "increased the danger to the people within the bank, decreased any tactical advantage the police had in responding" (2016 Public Fatality Inquiry). However, based on the testimony of both involved officers, an expert police witness from Calgary Police Service, and the statements made by the bank employees about their training on bank robberies, the inquiry concluded that it was extremely unusual that Mr. Bronaugh did not try to leave the bank quickly, and so no recommendations were made.
  • Man shot during police confrontation following hit-and-run
    Sterling Ross Cardinal was shot by police during an altercation in Northeast Edmonton. Cardinal was driving a stolen vehicle and was intercepted by police after being involved in a hit-and-run. According to ASIRT (the Alberta Serious Incident Response Team), two police officers approached the vehicle in the area of 66 Street and 123 Avenue and ordered Cardinal and the passenger to come out with their hands up. The passenger exited the vehicle and surrendered, but Cardinal stayed in the vehicle. The passenger later stated that Cardinal had a rifle in his lap. According to the ASIRT report, “This officer yelled ‘Gun, get back’ at the other officer, and commanded the man to drop the weapon. The man verbally refused, stating that he would not drop the gun, that officers would have to shoot him, and that he would shoot police,” (Edmonton Journal, June 5, 2020) before Cardinal fired one shot towards an officer. Police fired multiple shots in response, hitting Cardinal and killing him at the scene. Both Cardinal and his passenger were wanted on Canada-wide warrants for statutory release violations. A toxicology report from an autopsy showed he had alcohol, methamphetamine, cocaine and marijuana in his system. Cardinal was an Indigenous man from Calling Lake and a father of three, including a two-month-old baby boy.
  • A photo of the crime scene at night, showing several police vans, an ambulance, and a group of first responders (police and paramedics) gathered nearby. Behind them, a white tarp is laid over a body on the ground.Man shot by police during arrest attempt
    Matt Dumas was shot by Edmonton Police Service officers when trying to flee during an arrest attempt at Westmount Mall. Police attempted to box in Dumas, who was wanted on outstanding warrants related to drug trafficking, after tailing his vehicle to a parking lot at Westmount Mall. Three unmarked vehicles surrounded Dumas' parked car, which also had two female passengers, and turned on their emergency lights. Officers threw two flash-bang grenades towards the vehicle, and instructed the passengers to exit the vehicle with their hands up. Per the ASIRT report, all three individuals held up their hands for several seconds but did not exit the vehicle, before Dumas rammed the police vehicles to the rear and then the front of his car. Officers then threw 2 canisters of CS gas (tear gas) into the vehicle through the passenger window, and again pinned Dumas' car in place with their vehicles. As the officers began to attempt to remove the passengers, Dumas drew a handgun from a bag around his neck. Per the ASIRT report, one officer repeatedly told Dumas "don't do it", and another officer fired an ARWEN baton round (a "less-than-lethal" crowd control device that fires plastic rounds) that struck Dumas. Dumas then pointed his gun at one of the officers, at which point three officers opened fire on him. According to the ASIRT report (2020), the evidence is "unequivocal" that Dumas fired two rounds, which lodged in the dashboard of his vehicle; eyewitness reports suggest the police fired approximately 13 rounds. Dumas was struck multiple times and declared dead on the scene by a paramedic who accompanied the tactical response team. The two women in the car and officers were not injured. The coroner's report found traces of methamphetamine in his system, which the Executive Director of ASIRT, Susan Hughson, stated likely contributed to his "irrational decision" to attempt to flee and fire on the officers (Edmonton Journal, January 27, 2020). The ASIRT investigation concluded that the officers' use of force was justified; a Public Fatality Inquiry has yet to be scheduled as of November 2021. Friends of Dumas indicated that he had suffered increasing problems with drugs following the suicide of his twin brother in 2011. He was described as a "loving man" and one friend who spoke to media indicated he had young children.