With files from Kyle Benning
There will be no criminal charges approved against two Vancouver Police officers involved in the fatal shooting of a man at a busy intersection three years ago.
Police and witnesses say Tony Du, who suffered from schizophrenia, was visibly distraught and wandering in traffic on East 41st and Knight St. swinging a wooden board.
VPD say they were unable to subdue him with non-lethal force and were forced to shoot him.
READ MORE: Mental illness focus on Tony Du’s vigil
The Criminal Justice Branch says in a statement that despite an investigation from the IIO, the available evidence doesn’t meet the standard for approval of any charges.
Du’s death sparked many questions about police incidents involving those who suffer from mental illness.
Pivot Legal plans civil action on behalf of Du family
The lawyer who fought for charges against the police officer who killed Tony Du is worried about the precedent the case will set.
Pivot Legal Society lawyer Douglas King says the Independent Investigations Office’s findings leaves them with some questions.
“We’re very concerned about the precedent that not charging here may cause in the future. In our opinion, the Crown’s report and justification for not charging the officer is lacking in detail and it does not put into full context what happened to Tony and the reasons why he was killed,”
The Criminal Justice Branch says the evidence from this case doesn’t meet the standard for approval of any charges in connection with the shooting.
Du’s family has filed a lawsuit against the city of Vancouver and the police officer who shot him.
Pivot lawyer Douglas King says the investigation was far too long. Family waited 2 years, which is unacceptable pic.twitter.com/nyMnQwoNkq
— Kyle Benning (@KBBenning) February 9, 2017
“The IIO investigation revealed Tony Du was shot by an officer between 18 – 25 seconds after police arrived,” says King as part of a release. “The investigation leaves us with a lot of questions on why officers so quickly resorted to deadly force on a man in mental health crisis, who witnesses reported was not presenting as a threat.”
Pivot Legal say that the Crown’s statement failed to mention a variety of factors, including an accurate timeline of events, consideration of the height and weight difference between Du and the officers involved, and whether the officers had received or followed any kind of de-escalation training.