A former RCMP watchdog is calling for more police training following the shooting death of a young man in South Surrey.
It comes as a social media post hashtagged #JusticeForHudson goes viral – calling Hudson Brooks’ death a “murder” and saying police should have de-escalated the situation.
Police say Brooks was suicidal and died after a struggle with officers.
Former RCMP complaints commission chair Shirley Heafey says the death highlights a systemic problem in the force in handling mental health cases.
“It can sometimes take hours to de-escalate. But you know when you’re saving a life, hours shouldn’t be counted. The leadership of the RCMP has not done well in training their members.”
“There’s no question that they’re not properly trained. They’re doing what they can, but it gets to a point where they use their guns, because they don’t know what else to do.”
Heafey says it’s upsetting to see yet another death – despite repeated calls for changes in the way officers deal with mental illness.