Quebec's independent investigation unit beset by delays
New unit tasked with investigation incidents involving police will also take on sexual assault allegations
The Quebec government's planned independent bureau to investigate shootings, serious injuries and deaths involving a police officer is faced with another round of delays.
The province approved a proposal three years ago to create the Bureau des enquêtes indépendantes, but it's still not operational.
The bureau's latest targeted opening date was April 29.
But Madeleine Giauque, a former Crown prosecutor who was named its director in late 2014, told a parliamentary committee last week she would need more time to ensure the new unit can also handle allegations of sexual assault against police.
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The decision to add that investigative element to the bureau was made following allegations of abuse against police in Val-d'Or last year.
"It became clear to me last October after what happened in Val-d'Or that eventually, if we were up and running, that's a situation we would be called upon to investigate," Giauque told the parliamentary committee.
She said her new crop of investigators finished basic training last week. Monday, they began another round of month-long training specifically focused on investigating sexual assaults.
Opening pushed back to June
She said her team would be ready to start handling investigations in mid-June.
The most recent delay to the bureau comes following a string of police shootings, including the death of a 60-year-old man in Hochelaga-Maisonneuve on Monday following an intervention by Montreal police.
The Sûreté du Québec, which took over the investigation, said officers were were called to the apartment block to check on someone in psychological distress and that the man had a knife.
Provincial police say a stun gun was used in the police operation and the man was also struck by at least one bullet
Earlier this month, Sandy Tarzan Michel, 25, was fatally shot by a member of the local aboriginal police force in Lac-Simon.
In another incident, Jean-Pierre Bony, 46, died in hospital after he was shot with an officer's rubber bullet during a drug raid in Montreal North.
with files from Presse Canadienne