Police, SIU issue competing statements over beating complaint
A logo for Ontario's Special Investigations Unit is pictured. (CTV Toronto/Tom Stefanac)
The Canadian Press
Published Wednesday, January 2, 2013 4:14PM EST
TORONTO -- Ontario's Special Investigations Unit says it has been forced to close an investigation into a beating allegation against a Toronto police officer because the force is refusing to hand over a key document.
Ian Scott, the director of the SIU, is calling the situation "almost comical" and says the Toronto Police Service may be in breach of its duty to co-operate with the agency.
Toronto police communications director Mark Pugash says Scott is wrong, that the document is not the Toronto Police Service's to hand over.
Tyrone Phillips, 27, filed a complaint on Aug. 8 with the Office of the Independent Police Review Director, alleging he was beaten unconscious when he was arrested outside a Toronto nightclub on July 28.
The OIPRD forwarded his complaint to Toronto police on Sept. 19, and on Oct. 12 the police referred the complaint to the SIU, which investigates reports of death, serious injury or sexual assault.
Scott says the Toronto Police Service refuses to give the SIU a copy of Phillips' original complaint and he can't conduct a full investigation without it, but Pugash says Toronto police can't release a third-party document and the SIU must get it from the OIPRD.
No one at the OIPRD was immediately available to comment.