Family of Regis Korchinski-Paquet speaks out
Family members surrounded lawyer Knia Singh as he spoke out about the death of 29-year-old Regis Korchinski-Paquet.
The province's Special Investigations Unit now has conduct of her death, as the police were inside her apartment unit when she fell 24 floors to her death in the neighbourhood of High Park.
On Thursday, Singh held a news conference alongside several of Korchinski-Paquet's family members.
"Regis was in distress over a family conflict, and her mother sought police assistance to bring calm to the situation," Singh said. "Claudette pleaded with police to provide assistance to her daughter, and take her to CAMH to provide mental health support as Claudette did not want the problem to escalate where it became unsafe."
The Special Investigations Unit said in a statement on Wednesday night that police were called to a High Park Avenue apartment to investigate a domestic incident. In a news conference on Thursday, Toronto Police Chief Mark Saunders told reporters the call came in as an assault.
"It was a call for an assault that had just occurred," Saunders said. "I won't speak to the parties that were involved in the assault, but that was the call, I listened to the call, and it sounded rather frantic. There was a need for a police presence to be there."
Singh says several officers arrived Wednesday evening, and Korchinski-Paquet exchanged words with them. She told them she had to use the bathroom, and went into her apartment.
Her family alleges that multiple officers followed Korchinski-Paquet into the unit, and did not allow her family to go inside.
"After approximately one to two minutes, the mother and the brother heard commotion in the apartment, and then heard Regis cry out 'Mom, help. Mom, help. Mom, help'," Singh said. "After that, mother and brother heard silence."
Singh said an officer then came out of the unit, knocked on the neighbour's door, and told the family that Korchinski-Paquet was either in the neighbouring unit or the one below.
"After a few moments, the mother then asked the officers if her daughter is on the ground. An officer went into the unit, then came back out, and told her mother 'Yes, she is on the ground'," Singh said.
Singh went on to say that the family is distraught, and are calling for a transparent investigation by the SIU into Korchinski-Paquet's death.
None of the allegations have been proven.
The SIU said in a statement on Wednesday that it was aware of allegations made by family members, and is urging any witnesses to come forward.