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Mountie cleared of wrongdoing in B.C. porta-potty shooting

Officers are seen with guns drawn on Skyline Road in West Kelowna Wednesday. (Castanet.net) Officers are seen with guns drawn on Skyline Road in West Kelowna Wednesday. (Castanet.net)
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A Mountie who shot and injured a man who had been hiding in a portable toilet in West Kelowna has been cleared of criminal wrongdoing by British Columbia's police oversight agency.

The Independent Investigations Office of B.C. issued a summary of its findings into the shooting on Friday, determining there are no reasonable grounds for charges against the police officer.

The incident began shortly after noon on Oct. 18, 2023, when police responded to a complaint that a firearm was discharged at a home near Harvey Avenue and Richter Street in downtown Kelowna.

The suspect departed the scene but police received subsequent reports about a man with a gun in a vehicle, Mounties said at the time.

A short time later, firefighters in neighbouring West Kelowna contacted police to report a man with a gun fleeing the scene of a crashed vehicle.

Police found the man inside a portable toilet on Skyline Road near Anders Road.

An emergency response team and a crisis negotiator were called to the scene, but Mounties said the man would not comply with police directions.

The police oversight agency says an "interaction" followed and a police officer fired their weapon, injuring the man. He was taken to hospital for treatment.

The police watchdog said in a statement it cannot release further details about the shooting "as a court process related to this incident remains underway."

In reaching its finding that officers were in compliance with the law, the agency said its interim chief civilian director reviewed video and forensic evidence from the scene, as well as witness statements and police reports.

"There are no reasonable grounds to believe any officer may have committed an offence," the oversight agency concluded.

A full public report into the incident will be published by the IIO once the related court proceedings have concluded, the agency said.

The IIO investigates all officer-related incidents that result in serious harm or death in B.C., whether or not there are any allegations of wrongdoing on the part of the police.

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