A coroner’s inquest is underway into the case of a disturbed man killed in a police standoff outside the Starlight Casino in 2012.
It’s the first opportunity to hear more about what happened during a lengthy standoff in New Westminster that ended with 48-year-old Mehrdad Bayrami dead.
Dr. Manoj Singhal, a family doctor with psychiatric expertise who treated Bayrami, was first to testify, saying Bayrami was clinically depressed and suicidal.
In fact, when he started seeing the doctor, Bayrami was thinking of suicide every single day, but was improving on medication.
He last saw the patient on Oct. 23, 2012. The standoff took place just over two weeks later.
Bayrami’s ex-girlfriend, Tatiana Piltsina, testified that he was harassing her after they broke up, but Richmond RCMP didn’t take it seriously.
Piltsina says she was scared and Bayrami was following her everywhere.
She says he even put a GPS tracker in her car, calling her 60 to 70 times a day.
Piltsina says finally a female RCMP officer became involved and actually listened.
This whole case has caused more questions than answers. This inquest, set for 5 days, would be first chance to get some answers.— Charmaine de Silva (@char_des) February 9, 2016
In 2014, the Crown made the rare move of charging the police officer who shot Bayrami during the stand-off with second-degree murder, following an investigation by the province’s police watchdog.
But those proceedings were dropped last summer, after the Criminal Justice Branch said the available evidence didn’t support a viable prosecution.