Red Deer RCMP cleared in arrest of wheelchair-user with broken leg

Man who used a wheelchair was arrested after police responded to a dispute in March 2017

Red Deer RCMP officers have been cleared of any wrongdoing in the arrest of a man who uses a wheelchair and suffered a broken leg.

Alberta Serious Incident Response Team (ASIRT) was called in on March 21, 2017 to investigate the circumstances around the arrest of a 32-year-old man, who allegedly suffered the leg injury while in Red Deer RCMP custody eight days earlier.

ASIRT says two RCMP officers answered a call about a dispute between two roommates. When they arrived they discovered the subject of the complaint, who used a wheelchair, was wanted on an outstanding warrant out of Calgary.

The warrant meant the man could not be released and was taken to Red Deer detachment to go before a justice of the peace.

“The man accompanied the RCMP members to a police vehicle, where he was assisted into the rear seat,” says ASIRT in a Friday news release.

”The man instructed officers on how to disassemble his wheelchair, which was then loaded onto a second police vehicle, and both the man and his wheelchair were taken to the RCMP detachment.”

The man spent the night in cells and left in a taxi the next morning after being released on bail.

Later that day, the man noticed bruising on his leg and went to Red Deer Regional Hospital Centre, where it was found he had a fractured femur.

ASIRT says the RCMP acted lawfully when arresting the man and taking him into custody.

“During the course of the man’s arrest, transport, and detention, no force was used by any police officer, and the investigation did not identify any criminally negligent conduct by any police officer that may have caused the man’s leg injury.

“While it is uncertain when the man sustained the injury, the investigation determined that during the course of their dealings with the man, the actions of the Red Deer RCMP were lawful and, accordingly, no criminal charges will stem from police conduct during this incident.”

ASIRT’s mandate is to independently and objectively investigate incidents involving Alberta’s police that have resulted in serious injury or death to any person, as well as serious or sensitive allegations of police misconduct.

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