Despite ‘unnecessary’ kicking of suspect, oversight agency clears Calgary police officers

CALGARY—Alberta’s police oversight agency declined to charge Calgary police officers Friday for the November 2016 shooting, punching and kicking of a stolen car suspect.

The Alberta Serious Incident Response Team (ASIRT) found that one officer wasn’t justified in kicking a suspect who had already been subdued, but decided not to lay charges because it wasn’t likely the officer would be convicted, it said. The officer who shot the suspect was justified, the agency found.

“Objectively, the actions (of the officer who kicked the suspect) could be viewed as unnecessary, punitive and the result of heightened emotions rather than tactical need,” said ASIRT in a press release.

The Nov. 3, 2016 incident was captured in part by dash cam video from a police cruiser. A few minutes before 7 p.m., two officers in a marked Calgary police car came across a stolen Honda Civic involved in a traffic infraction, ASIRT said.

Read more: Calgary police go back to school to tap the brakes on auto crooks

As the officers waited for backup, the Civic was pulled into an alley and appeared to park, said ASIRT. The officers switched on their patrol car’s emergency lights and pulled in behind the Civic, which was facing a closed garage door.

The 20-year-old man behind the wheel of the Civic was alone. Though he initially seemed “calm and compliant,” he suddenly shifted the car into reverse and backed it into the police car, then drove forward and to the left.

One officer got out of the…

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