Definitions - Investigation Related

Listed below are definitions for various terms used within the ASIRT website.

Affected Person

An affected person is someone who has been seriously injured or has died as a result of the actions of the police.

Civilian Overseer

A civilian overseer is one or more members of the public appointed to observe, monitor, or review an investigation to ensure the integrity of the investigative process. Civilian overseers are appointed by the Director of Law Enforcement.

Community Liaison

A community liaison is a respected community member appointed by the affected community who

  • volunteers to help facilitate the link between the community, the affected person, and ASIRT and/or
  • acts as an impartial observer to the investigation in support of ASIRT's mandate to conduct an objective, independent investigation.

Serious Injury

Serious Injury shall include injuries likely to interfere with the health or comfort of the person and are more than merely passing or trivial in nature. A Serious Injury shall initially be presumed when the person is either admitted for a stay in hospital or suffers severe trauma to the body (or both) with the injury including, but not limited to

  • a fracture or combination of fracture and severe trauma to a limb, rib, or vertebrae or to the skull including the probability of a head injury;
  • burns or abrasions to a major portion of the body;
  • loss of any portion of the body;
  • loss of mobility (paralysis) of any portion of the body;
  • loss of vision or hearing;
  • injury to any internal organ;
  • loss of conciousness brought about by a state of extreme mental distress, prolonged agitation and/or combative behaviour which collectively may be classified as symptoms of a state of excited delirium.

Serious Injury shall be presumed in instances where a prolonged delay may be likely before the nature and seriousness of injury can be assessed.

Serious injury will be presumed in ALL instances where

  • sexual assault is alleged;
  • a gunshot wound of any degee of severity is sustained by a person as a result of a firearm fired by a police officer.

Serious and/or Sensitive Allegations of Police Misconduct

Defined as any matter of a Serious or Sensitive Nature, the consequences of which may be likely to bring the administration of justice, and more particularly the police service, into disrepute. Examples of such matters include, but are not limited to

  • Allegation that a firearm was discharged at a person by a police officer; including instances where a firearm was discharged by a police officer into or upon a motor vehicle;
  • Allegation of Sexual Assault by a police officer;
  • Allegation of Aggravated Assault by a police officer;
  • Allegation involving criminal fraudulent activities by a police officer;
  • Allegation of serious breach of trust by a police officer;
  • Allegations together constituting potential systemic racism or discrimination; and
  • Allegations together constituting potential systemic fraud or corruption.

Subject Officer

A subject officer is defined as a police officer whose conduct, in the ASIRT Executive Director's opinion, may have caused the death or serious injury under investigation.

Subject officers are invited but not compelled to present themselves for an interview with ASIRT, and they do not have to submit their police notes to ASIRT. Once an officer becomes the focus of an investigation and therefore faces potential criminal jeopardy, the officer is granted the same rights as any citizen under the Charter of Rights and Freedoms to protection from self-incrimination.

Witness Officer

A witness officer is a police officer who, in the opinion of ASIRT's Executive Director, is involved in or has knowledge of the incident under investigation but is not the subject officer.

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