Ontario announces inquest into death of 25-year-old man killed following 2017 hostage situation in Vaughan

The outside of a RBC branch located in the area of Dufferin Street and Major Mackenzie Drive West is seen.

An inquest into the death of a man who was killed by police in York Region following a hostage situation will begin later this month, Ontario’s Coroner's Office announced Friday.

Dr. Joel Kirsh, Regional Supervising Coroner for Central Region, Central East Office, made the announcement by way of a news release issued by the Ministry of the Solicitor General.

The inquest will examine the December 13, 2017 death of 25-year-old Ali Zaraeeneh, who the province says died following injuries sustained from an interaction with York Regional Police.

In an email to CTV News Toronto, the Office of the Chief Coroner confirmed that officers with York Regional Police shot and killed Zaraeeneh after he allegedly stormed an RBC bank branch, located near Major Mackenzie Drive West and Dufferin Street in Vaughan, and took 13 people, including staff and customers, hostage.

At that time, Emergency Response Unit officers, an armoured vehicle and a helicopter surrounded the bank and negotiators were called to the scene to respond to the incident. Officers said that they were ultimately forced to use lethal force in order to gain control of the suspect.

Following an SIU investigation, no criminal charges were laid in connection with the police-involved shooting.

“The inquest will examine the circumstances surrounding Mr. Zaraeeneh’s death. The jury may make recommendations aimed at preventing further deaths,” the news release read.

Officials said the process is expected to last five days and is set to begin at 9:30 a.m. on July 27. Approximately 10 witnesses to the 2017 incident will be heard from at the inquest.

Dr. Mara Goldstein will preside as inquest officer and Julian Roy will be the inquest counsel, the office said.

The proceedings will be carried out via video conference and members of the public can watch the inquest live here