On Jan. 10, the Alberta Serious Incident Response Team (ASIRT) was directed to investigate the death of a 25-year-old man that had occurred earlier that day when the man was in the custody of the St. Paul RCMP.
At approximately 5:40 a.m., St. Paul RCMP received a complaint of three suspicious people looking into vehicles on 51 Avenue near 55 Street. An officer went to the area and located three people. One man was arrested on outstanding warrants.
The man was cooperative with the officer. He was searched and put into a police vehicle. He was then taken to the St. Paul RCMP detachment, arriving at 6:33 a.m., and was placed into a cell to wait for a bail hearing. No one else was in this cell, which a guard monitored throughout the day.
At 6:20 p.m., the man asked for coffee and was given some. A short time later, he appeared to be sleeping. At approximately 9 p.m., an officer entered the cell to allow the man to speak to duty counsel before his bail hearing. The man was unresponsive. Officers began life-saving efforts and called Emergency Medical Services, which arrived shortly later and took over care. Their efforts were unsuccessful, and the man was pronounced deceased at approximately 9:45 p.m.
An autopsy was conducted on Jan. 13. Complete autopsy results, including toxicology results, are pending and will be incorporated into the investigation. ASIRT’s investigation will examine the circumstances surrounding the death in custody. No additional information will be released at this time.
ASIRT’s mandate is to effectively, independently and objectively investigate incidents involving Alberta’s police that have resulted in severe injury or death to any person, as well as serious or sensitive allegations of police misconduct.
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