A model Storm Trooper stands on display at the Walt Disney Co. store in New York on Sept. 1, 2017. MUST CREDIT: Bloomberg photo by Jeenah Moon.

A model Storm Trooper stands on display at the Walt Disney Co. store in New York on Sept. 1, 2017. MUST CREDIT: Bloomberg photo by Jeenah Moon.

No criminal charges for southern Alberta police in ‘Star Wars’ storm trooper arrest

Police to do professional misconduct investigation

LETHBRIDGE, Alta. — The force appears to be with police officers in southern Alberta who took a young woman wearing a “Star Wars” storm-trooper costume to the ground last May.

The 19-year-old restaurant employee, who had agreed to wear the white uniform of a Galactic Empire soldier and carry a plastic gun as part of a promotion, ended up with a bloody nose.

The Lethbridge Police Service says an investigation by Medicine Hat Police has determined that no officers will face criminal charges and the finding was reviewed by the Alberta Crown and the Alberta Serious Incident Response Team.

Lethbridge police say there will now be a professional misconduct investigation, but won’t say if it will include one or all three of the officers involved.

At the time, police said they responded to a firearms call and the woman had dropped the toy weapon but didn’t get down on the ground when she was asked.

A video shows three armed officers yelling at the woman, who has her hands in the air and kneels then is down on the ground crying.

“The weapon was ultimately confirmed to be a fake firearm and the female subject, who indicated she was an employee promoting a local business, was not charged,” Lethbridge police said in a release Wednesday.

“The female sustained a minor injury.”

At the time, “Star Trek” actor William Shatner, who played Captain Kirk in movies and on television, blasted police on Twitter for the takedown.

“Captain’s Log Stardate 49: Sending my contempt this morning to the @lethpolice of Alberta, Canada & @LPSChief1. Rifles drawn for a plastic toy Cosplayer? Didn’t comply right away? Are you blind Chief? Watch the video to see how quickly she complied,” he posted. “This cannot be covered up.”

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Dec. 23, 2020.

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