SIU closes investigation says woman did not suffer serious injuries in clash with mounted police

Photo of woman after she fell to pavement in clash with mounted police in trucker’s convoy Ottawa protests (Facebook Photo)

By Lynda Powless

Writer

OTTAWA- Ontario’s police watchdog  has closed its investigation into a clash between a 49-year-old Mohawk woman  and a  police mounted unit  at the COVID-19 mandate protests that paralyzed Ottawa for three weeks saying the woman suffered only a shoulder strain in the encounter.

In a  media release on Monday, the Special Investigation Unit (SIU) said a review of the woman’s medical records showed she did not suffer a “serious injury” other than a strained shoulder after she was knocked to the ground by a Toronto Police officer on  horseback.

“A review of the available medical records indicates that the woman did not sustain any fractures and that her injury was limited to a strained shoulder,” the SIU media release said. “In the circumstances, as the woman did not sustain a ‘serious injury’ within the terms of the SIU’s mandate, the SIU does not have statutory jurisdiction to investigate the matter, and the file is closed.”

The clash occurred Feb. 18 on Rideau Street and Mackenzie Avenue during the  “freedom convoy” protests against COVID-19 vaccine mandates.The SIU  opened the investigation on Feb. 20, but said it decided to no longer continue with the probe after interviewing the woman and reviewing police drone and camera footage.

“The matter has been referred to the TPS (Toronto Police Service) for further investigation as they deem appropriate,” SIU added.

In its statement, SIU said  mounted officers moved into the crowd on Rideau Street in front of the Chateau Laurier, and one horse knocked a man and a woman to the ground.

The incident went viral when footage of the horse unit allegedly “trampling” the woman included a false report that the woman had died and was shared by a Fox News contributor with 1.3 million Twitter followers. It was later deleted.

The SIU investigation said the woman had actually been helped to her feet and was seen standing within the line of police officers immediately afterward.

The woman, Candice Sero, went to two different hospitals over the next three days with shoulder pain.  Sero held a press conference during those three days in which she described her injuries, at the time, as severe bruising on a leg, a fractured collarbone, and sore ribs.

She had been among a group of protesters taking part in the the Ottawa demonstrations  made up mostly of truckers that rolled into the capital on Jan. 28, bringing Ottawa to a standstill.

Hundreds of police officers from across Canada were brought in to bring it to an end . Nore than 100 people are facing charges from  obstruction to weapons possessions, assault and mischief. They were released on promises to appear or granted bail with strict conditions on social media use and cannot communicate with other convoy leaders.

The SIU is an independent civilian agency that investigates deaths and serious injuries involving police.

 

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