The Alberta Serious Incident Response Team (ASIRT) has concluded that there is no, 'evidence to indicate any improper action or inaction by police that could have caused the death of an individual in custody in 2021.'
According to the report by ASIRT, on June 7, 2021, the Airdrie RCMP officers arrested the AP (Affected Person).
"He was taken to the hospital for assessment and, later that day, released as fit for incarceration. He was then taken to the Airdrie detachment cells and remained there overnight. The next day, he appeared to ingest something in his cell. Based on its effects and later toxicology results, it was methamphetamine. A short time later, police called for EMS for the AP, and he became unresponsive. Despite the efforts of police, fire, and EMS, the AP died."
ASIRT noted in its report that the individual was acting oddly when he was arrested. Once police officers had arrested the individual and placed them in the back of an RCMP cruiser, video footage captured the AP, 'hit[ting] his head on the plastic barrier between the seats. A cut over his left eye is then visible in the video."
Officers had the AP provide a breath sample and during this time the individual appeared to start convulsing.
"During this process, the AP appeared to start to convulse at 1:40 p.m. After the convulsions stopped, the subject officers put the AP back into the police vehicle. He continued to act and move oddly and, at 1:58 p.m., he hit his head another four times."
However, ASIRT noted that the individual was properly assessed by a doctor and cleared for incarceration later that day.
"Over the next approximately 16 hours, he appeared to be normal. At 9:59 a.m., the AP appeared to ingest something. His condition then changed, and he appeared to be in some sort of medical distress. Based on all the evidence available, the AP consumed methamphetamine that he had hidden."
ASIRT added that to strip search the AP, the subject officers or other officers needed reasonable and probable grounds to believe that the AP was concealing something.
"The mere possibility that he was concealing something is insufficient. Here, there is no evidence that he was concealing something. The subject officers cannot be faulted for not searching the AP more since they were following the law. Once the AP was noted as being in medical distress, the staff and officers at the Airdrie detachment acted quickly and properly. They called EMS while providing the care they were able to. There is no evidence of negligence or failing to provide the necessaries of life."
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