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Man dies after being pepper-sprayed by police

Independent Investigations Office of B.C. investigators are in Prince George to investigate the death of a man who was pepper sprayed by police

According to police, at 10:32 p.m. on Tuesday July 18, RCMP officers were responding to a call of a man “casing vehicles” in the 1000 block of Central Street West in Prince George. Officers located the man and attempted to take him into custody. Police say a struggle ensued and they used  pepper spray to subdue the man, who was then placed in a police vehicle. The man appeared to be having trouble breathing and police requested medical assistance. Police say once the ambulance arrived, the man was taken out of the police vehicle and collapsed. He was pronounced dead in hospital shortly after midnight.

IIO investigators are on scene and will be obtaining physical evidence, designating and interviewing officers and reviewing available video footage.

The initial focus of the IIO investigation will be to determine if there is a connection between the death of the man and the actions or inactions of police. If there is no connection then the IIO will release jurisdiction, if there is a connection the IIO will continue investigating.

Any potential witnesses of this incident are asked to call the IIO at 1-855-446-8477.

The IIO will not be providing any information about the deceased as this is the responsibility of BC Coroners Service at their discretion.

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