A family in L'Isle-Verte, Que., is reeling after they rushed to the hospital bedside of their brother only to realize, after hours of tending to him, it was a case of mistaken identity by provincial police.
On Thursday, Quebec provincial police were called to a scene in L'Isle-Verte after passersby found a man seriously injured outside a home, said Sûreté du Québec spokeswoman Audrey-Anne Bilodeau.
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"The injured person didn't have any identification on him," Bilodeau said.
"There [were] some people on site and they identified the man as Roland Lafrance."
Lafrance's family was contacted about the accident and were told Lafrance had been transferred to a hospital in Quebec City.
The family said Lafrance had fallen and hit his head at his fishing cabin on Jan. 1, so they believed he had fallen again as a result of a head injury.
Daisy Boucher Lafrance, Roland's niece, says her mother and aunt rushed to the hospital to take care of their brother.
Hours spent at hospital bedside
Boucher Lafrance says the condition of the man was such that identifying him was difficult.
She says her mom and aunt spent hours next to him, holding his hand and receiving updates from the hospital about his condition.
It was only when an unsuspecting Roland called his family the next day that they realized the man in the Quebec City hospital bed was a stranger.
"It's a terrible mistake by provincial police," Boucher Lafrance told CBC News.
In a Facebook post, Boucher Lafrance says police should be ashamed.
"The police misidentified him and now my mom is alone there with a stranger...This man could die and his family is not with him because of a mistake."
Provincial police say they have now contacted the appropriate family.