Toronto officers who shot, killed Ottawa man will not be charged: SIU

The Special Investigations Unit says there are no grounds to lay charges against Toronto Police in the shooting death of an Ottawa man.

30-year-old Devon LaFleur was fired at close to 20 times by three officers in March of 2016 outside a shelter for women in crisis, suffering 8 gunshot wounds.

Toronto Police had intercepted LaFleur after Ottawa Police alerted them of an investigation into a car theft and armed bank robbery, adding that LaFleur was suspected of carrying stolen pellet pistol which resembles a real gun.

The ruling says multiple officers saw the man holding what appeared to be a handgun, and no one opened fire until he raised his arm despite several commands to drop the weapon.

After the officers shot the man, they learned he was holding the air pistol.

But because it was never made clear what weapon was used in the bank robbery, the SIU says the Toronto officers were never completely certain of what LaFleur was armed with during the altercation.

"It makes no difference that the man was in fact in possession of a CO2 pistol, and that the officers were aware of that possibility," said SIU director Tony Loparco in the ruling. "They did not have the luxury of waiting to be fired upon to confirm the nature of the weapon in question. The CO2 pistol looked exactly like a real firearm, and the police were entitled to treat it as such."

With files from CP24