The B.C. Prosecution Service has cleared three West Shore RCMP officers of wrongdoing after a woman’s jaw was broken in custody four years ago.
On March 16, 2014, an intoxicated woman was arrested after she failed a roadside breath test and refused a taxi ride home.
She was taken to the West Shore RCMP detachment to sober up, however, shortly after arriving, she became aggressive and tried to strike one of the officers.
In an effort to restrain her, officers took her to the ground where she struck her chin that caused a broken jaw and a cut, which automatically triggers an investigation by the Independent Investigations Office (IIO) into the actions of the officers.
After reviewing a report of the IIO investigation, the prosecution service determined that Crown wouldn’t be able to prove officers committed a crime or used excessive force in the matter.
The report said that the entire transaction was captured on video and backed up officers’ claims that the woman was “grossly intoxicated” and non-compliant with police directions, and showed she kicked at officers, prompting the takedown.
She was then transported to Victoria General Hospital but was denied treatment for being rude and non-compliant. She was returned to the detachment and was kept in a cell for about six hours before being released.
The woman returned to the hospital for treatment. But it wasn’t until a week later, after seeing another doctor who ordered an X-ray, which it was discovered that her jaw was broken.