B.C. POLICE WATCHDOG RELEASES LIST OF INJURIES SUSTAINED BY MYLES GRAY
B.C.’s independent police watchdog has released a shocking list of injuries suffered by Myles Gray in a fatal altercation with eight Vancouver police officers two years ago, including a fractured voice box and sternum.
The Independent Investigations Office of B.C. filed a petition in B.C. Supreme Court this week, asking that an officer who witnessed the event sit for a second interview. Gray’s cause of death has not been released, however the IIO included the man’s injuries suffered in the encounter with police.
The injuries include a fractured voice box, nasal fracture, dislocated jaw, a fractured right orbital eye socket, a fractured rib, fractured sternum, hemorrhagic injury to one testicle, and multi-focal bruising to thigh and right arm.
The petition alleges Const. Harder Sahota, one of the eight officers involved, has refused requests from the IIO for another interview.
Martin Youssef, a spokesman with IIOBC, said Wednesday that the main issue for the IIO is whether a witness officer is entitled to place conditions on “their duty to cooperate with an IIO investigation.”
“It’s in the public interest for the IIO to conduct a thorough investigation and to determine all the relevant facts, and only after receiving that can we reach conclusions,” he said. “Obviously, we’ve tried a number of different steps leading up to this, and this is a last resort for us.”
Gray died on the afternoon of Aug. 13, 2015, in the backyard of a house on Joffre Avenue, just east of Boundary Road, in Burnaby.
He had been pursued there from the 3600-block South East Marine Drive in Vancouver by as many as six Vancouver police officers, following a complaint of a “distraught man causing a disturbance,” according to a statement from the Vancouver Police Department. Initial attempts to arrest him resulted in Gray becoming “agitated.” More officers were called in, pepper spray was used and, eventually, a “physical altercation” broke out.
New details from the petition allege police received reports of Gray harassing a woman by spraying a garden hose at her on South East Marine Drive. It also claims the caller reported that the man was “apparently high on drugs and alcohol.”
The petition states that Sahota reported an “aggressive confrontation between the woman and Gray” and requested backup. When more officers arrived at the Joffre Avenue residence, an altercation involving eight officers and Gray resulted in Gray’s death and some injuries to officers.
Youssef noted that this is the second case where the IIO has had to petition the court to seek co-operation from an officer during an investigation.
Margie and Mark Gray hold a picture Thursday, March 10, 2016 of their son Myles Gray, who was killed by VPD last August under suspicious circumstances. The Gray’s are looking for answers.