Burnaby RCMP respond to incident at SFU


2020-12-12 16:45 PST

File # 2020-48776

On December 11, 2020 at around 9:00 p.m., a Burnaby frontline officer responded to call from Simon Fraser University Campus Security who were requesting assistance with a man familiar to them who was refusing to leave a campus dining hall. Campus security reported to police that the man was not a student of the University and refused to leave contrary to the safety requirements placed by SFU during the COVID-19 pandemic. Approximately twelve other individuals, including both SFU students and employees, were inside the dining hall with the man.

Upon arrival, a single officer located the man inside the dining hall, circling and yelling at several campus security employees. The police officer spent several minutes using crisis intervention and verbal-de-escalation techniques with repeated requests, asking the man to leave the premise.

When the man refused to comply with the direction to leave, by both the campus security and the police officer, the police officer told the man he was under arrest for causing a disturbance. While attempting to take the man into custody, the man took the officer by the arm and a physical altercation ensued and the officer deployed oleoresin capsicum spray (pepper spray).

During this altercation, the man subdued the officer and placed the officer in a chokehold. Fearing for his safety, the officer deployed a conducted energy weapon (CEW). Only with use of both police intervention tools was the officer able to take the man into custody safely.

When a police officer is required to use force during the arrest of an individual, the officer completes a Subject Behaviour / Officer Response report.

Each occurrence demands accurate documentation that demonstrates in detail the necessity of such a response, says Surperintendent Graham Delagorgendiere of the Burnaby RCMP. This report, along with witness testimony and video evidence is now being reviewed by the supervisor of the involved officer.

Once in custody, the police officer then immediately sought the assistance of BC Ambulance Service. With the assistance of police, an ambulance took the man to hospital where he was treated for minor injuries sustained from the CEW deployment. The man was then released from police custody to medical staff after being apprehended under the Mental Health Act. Criminal charges for Cause a Disturbance and Assaulting a Peace Officer are pending.

RCMP officers use the Incident Management Intervention Model (IMIM) when interacting with the public. IMIM emphasizes communication which includes de-escalation. Situations involving people in mental health crisis are complex and dynamic. Police officers may have to use force along with communication and de-escalation.

The RCMP has strengthened crisis intervention and de-escalation training for all its officers. Mandatory training helps them determine when and how to use crisis intervention and de-escalation techniques. This training complements what cadets learn at the RCMP Training Academy, as well as other training offered in BC and the Burnaby RCMP Detachment.

Following the incident, police officers were notified by University Campus Public Safety that the man was an Alumni of the University.


Released by

Cpl. Michael Kalanj

Media Relations Officer
Burnaby RCMP
burnaby.rcmp-grc.gc.ca (English only)
6355 Deer Lake Avenue, Burnaby, BC, V5G 2J2
Office: 604-646-9566
Fax: 604-646-9704

Email: burnaby_rcmp_media@rcmp-grc.gc.ca

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