British Columbia

'Repeatedly struck by VPD officers': Man suffered broken ribs, concussion during mistaken arrest, suit claims

A Vancouver man claims police officers broke his ribs and gave him a concussion while mistakenly arresting him during the hunt for a fugitive accused of shooting a Transit Police officer.

Jason Victor Hernandez says officers refused to check his ID after believing he was Daon Glasgow

Surrey RCMP released a composite of pictures of Daon Glasgow after announcing that he was wanted in connection with the shooting of a Transit Police officer. Jason Victor Hernandez claims Vancouver police officers mistook him for the suspect. (Surrey RCMP)

A Vancouver man claims police officers broke his ribs and gave him a concussion while mistakenly arresting him during the hunt for a fugitive accused of shooting a Transit Police officer.

Jason Victor Hernandez has filed a lawsuit against the Vancouver Police Department and six unnamed officers in B.C. Supreme Court for damages he claims he suffered as a result of the ordeal.

According to the notice of civil claim, Hernandez claims he was leaving the Real Canadian Superstore at the Metrotown mall in Burnaby in February when he was confronted by VPD officers who were part of the Lower Mainland-wide hunt for Daon Glasgow.

Glasgow was later arrested and charged with the attempted murder of Transit Police Const. Josh Harms at the Scott Road SkyTrain Station in Surrey.

But he was still at large at the time Hernandez claims he was mistaken for the wanted man.

'Targeting the wrong individual'

"The VPD officers instructed Mr. Hernandez that he must surrender himself into their custody without resisting," the lawsuit reads.

"Mr. Hernandez, who was not armed with anything other than shopping bags, did not resist in any fashion beyond expressing his belief that police were targeting the wrong individual."

Hernandez claims he complied but was "repeatedly struck by VPD officers" anyway, sustaining a series of injuries.

He claims he was handcuffed and brought into a waiting Vancouver police vehicle where he was told he was suspected of being Glasgow — "the perpetrator of the SkyTrain shooting."

"Upon hearing this, Mr. Hernandez immediately protested his innocence and offered to provide identification that would show conclusively that he was not Mr. Glasgow," the notice of claim says.

"Despite the fact that Mr. Hernandez bears almost no resemblance to Mr. Glasgow, he was detained for over five hours while VPD members refused to check his identification or accept his explanation that he was not the person they were seeking."

Transit Police Const. Josh Harms was shot in January while on patrol at Scott Road SkyTrain Station. Police across the Lower Mainland took part in the hunt for a suspect. (Transit Police)

'Prolonged emotional distress'

Glasgow is 36 years old. Hernandez is 47.

Hernandez claims he wasn't released until police processed his fingertips and found they didn't match the other man's.

"The detention of Mr. Hernandez during this time was unlawful and caused Mr. Hernandez prolonged emotional distress," the lawsuit says.

Hernandez claims that the VPD officers apologized to him after he was released and offered to provide him temporary accommodations in a nearby hotel as he had "missed an appointment to move into a new residence" because of the arrest.

But he says the department didn't follow through on the promise and he spent a night "in the hotel lobby awaiting reservations which never arrived."

"This callous treatment heightened Mr. Hernandez' distress with the whole series of events," the lawsuit says.

Hernandez doesn't specify an amount but is suing for physical and mental damages he claims he suffered through the ordeal. He claims the officers were negligent in their investigation.

No response has been filed to the lawsuit.

None of the allegations have been proven in court.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Jason Proctor

@proctor_jason

Jason Proctor is a reporter in British Columbia for CBC News and has covered the B.C. courts and the justice system extensively.

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