Police assault charge against homeless man dropped
Man suing Ottawa police, alleging officers used excessive force during 2011 arrest
A charge of assaulting police was dropped against a homeless man who is suing the Ottawa Police Service and two officers for $500,000.
Hugh Styres, 51, was charged with assaulting police during an incident on Aug. 13 last year after police alleged he took a swing at an Ottawa police officer, but missed.
Police had found Styres lying on a sidewalk along Henderson Avenue in the Sandy Hill neighbourhood that morning.
Prosecutors confirmed Wednesday they withdrew the charge.
In Styres' statement of claim filed with the Superior Court of Justice last year, Styres said two officers "without provocation" used excessive force, "causing him to strike or fall to the ground with extreme force and, in particular, causing his head to strike the ground with extreme force."
The blow fractured bones around his eye, loosened teeth and fractured the upper left jawbone, he said in his statement of claim.
None of the claims in the civil lawsuit have been proven in court.
Two officers involved in the arrest have been charged with assault causing bodily harm after an investigation of the Ontario's Special Investigations Unit, and are set to go on trial in 2014.