British Columbia’s police watchdog is investigating after the wrong man was arrested by the RCMP.
The Independent Investigations Office of British Columbia (IIO BC) was notified of the incident, which occurred in Surrey on February 8 at approximately 5:30 am.
“Frontline officers from the Surrey RCMP were called to investigate an armed robbery at a business in 10300-block of 152 street,” reads a statement from the IIO. “The suspect had been seen leaving the scene on a bicycle.”
The watchdog says a police officer located another male who they believed matched the description of the suspect and was also riding a bicycle, and placed him under arrest.
The man reportedly resisted the officer’s attempts to be taken into custody, and a struggle ensued — several backup officers were needed to take the man into custody.
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IIO BC says it was later determined the man was not the suspect involved in the armed robbery, and he was released from police custody at the scene. He was assessed and treated at the scene by emergency services, but it was later discovered that the man suffered serious injures.
“The RCMP regrets the mistake made in identifying the man and now offers a complete apology to him,” reads a police statement.
The IIO BC is now investigating to determine whether police actions are linked to the man’s injuries.