British Columbia

Man dead after standoff with police in Victoria

A man was shot and killed by police in Victoria on Sunday following a standoff near a busy mall.

B.C.'s independent police investigation office is looking into the incident

Emergency responders at Douglas Street and Tolmie Avenue in Victoria where a man was shot and killed by police on Sunday Sept. 12, 2021. (CHEK News)

A man was shot and killed by police in Victoria on Sunday following a standoff near a busy mall.

The Victoria Police Department said in a release that around 10 a.m. PT Sunday, Saanich police officers responded to Douglas Street at Tolmie Avenue, near Mayfair Mall, after receiving reports of an armed man in crisis who was making threats.

Police also received reports that a suspect had robbed a nearby liquor store while armed.

Officers from the nearby Victoria Police Department rushed to help officers from Saanich.

At the time, police said on Twitter that they were trying to "de-escalate and negotiate with a person in crisis" and asked people to avoid the area.

'Up and down with his emotions'

Kevin Toffey, who said he witnessed the standoff, said police were "negotiating with [the man], trying to calm him down. It kind of went up and down with his emotions."

Police did not say what type of weapon the man had, but Toffey said it was a knife. 

Victoria police said around 11 a.m., "an interaction" occurred between its officers and the man. One of their officers shot the man.

Victoria police said its officers then provided first aid until paramedics arrived and took over. Police said the man died of his injuries at the scene.

IIO investigating

The incident is being investigated by B.C.'s Independent Investigations Office (IIO), which is the independent civilian oversight agency of police in British Columbia. It investigates all officer-related incidents that result in serious harm or death, whether or not there is any allegation of wrongdoing.

Victoria Police Chief Del Manak posted a video on Twitter Sunday evening to address the death.

"First and foremost I want to start by offering my condolences to the family of the man that has died. The thoughts of my officers and staff are with them today," he said.

Manak went on to say that his officers are experienced in dealing with dynamic and high-risk incidents, which they face on a regular basis.

"Based on what I know, I have every confidence that our officers acted appropriately based on their training and their experience."

Manak encourages the investigation by the IIO and wants anyone with information to contact the agency.

The IIO is asking people with information to call 1-855-446-8477.