No charges for OPP dog handler after woman bit during Leamington drug bust: SIU

The headquarters for the Special Investigations Unit is seen here.

An OPP police dog handler has been cleared by the Special Investigations Unit in connection with a woman’s head injury last November during a Leamington drug bust.

SIU director Joseph Martino has found no “reasonable grounds” to believe the handler committed a criminal offence in regards to the injury.

On Nov. 18, 2020, the OPP executed a “high-risk warrant” at a rural Leamington grow operation. Police had to clear multiple buildings and a canine unit was requested to conduct weapon checks in the building.

Martino’s report says members of the OPP Tactical Rescue Unit (TRU) cleared the house on the property and located nine people.

Two Emergency Response Team (ERT) officers along with the canine unit entered a room where a police dog found a 41-year-old woman hiding underneath clothes in a bedroom closet. The police dog bit the woman on the top of her head.

“Director Martino found he was unable to reasonably conclude that the police dog handler transgressed the limits of care prescribed by criminal law. Accordingly, the file has been closed,” the SIU says.

As a result of the investigation, the file has been closed and no charges were laid.

The SIU is an independent government agency that investigates the conduct of officials that may have resulted in death, serious injury, sexual assault and/or the discharge of a firearm at a person. All investigations are conducted by SIU investigators who are civilians.