Police shoot man after high-speed chase in Winnipeg

A police chase that ended with a man being shot Monday left some rattled in Winnipeg's St. Boniface neighbourhood.

'It was like a scene from a video game or from a movie' says witness who works near Archibald scene

Police focus their investigation on a car pulled over on Archibald Street. (Trevor Brine/CBC)

A police chase that ended with a man being shot Monday left some rattled in Winnipeg's St. Boniface neighbourhood.

"It was pretty intense," said Shayne Gervais, who heard a succession of "very rapid" gunshots ring out near where he works at an autobody shop on Archibald Street.

"[The tactical support unit] had assault rifles out and everything. It was like a scene from a video game or from a movie."

Miriam Saibel and Shayne Gervais works at Brothers Autobody on Archibald Street, near the site of the shooting. (Erin Brohman/CBC)

Police spokesman Const. Rob Carver said they were called shortly after 11 a.m. about a man with a gun around some homes on LaVerendrye Street.

When officers responded, a car at the scene sped away, he said. Police chased it for a few blocks until the car being pursued crashed on Archibald.

The car was quickly surrounded by police vehicles and a man in the car was shot.

Carver said information about what happened was just coming in. He didn't know how many shots were fired, if more than one officer fired a weapon, or where the man was hit.

Police Chief Danny Smyth said that the man was in surgery Monday afternoon. 

Police mark the location of shell casings with chalk circles and hard hats at the scene of Monday's shooting. (Trevor Brine/CBC)

"A number of people are under arrest," Carver said.

Gervais' coworker ​Miriam Siebel says she ran outside the moment she heard gunfire and sirens.

"I saw all the cop cars stopping and [officers] jumping out and running to the crime scene," Siebel said, adding she witnessed police applying first aid until an ambulance arrived. "It's scary."

'Wild scene'

Garry Gowler, a delivery driver in the city, witnessed the chase. He told CBC News the car went past him at high speed, followed by about 15 police cars, around 11 a.m. on Monday.

When he turned off Archibald, even more police cars came racing up Dawson Road.

"It was really quite the scene," Gowler said. "We're talking 80-90 km/h, easy. The cops were just flying and relying on everybody to get the heck out of the way.

A police chase that ended with a man being shot Monday left some rattled in Winnipeg's St. Boniface neighbourhood. 1:43

"It was just a wild scene."

According to the Independent Investigation Unit of Manitoba, there have been eight officer-involved shootings since the unit's inception in June 2015. That number includes Monday's incident.

The IIU investigates all serious incidents involving police officers in Manitoba, whether occurring on or off duty.

'It was unbelievable'

Dwayne McCauley, who works at an auto repair shop across the street from a roofing company where the car crashed, said it was all like a scene from the TV show Cops.

"We were just in the back shop and the doors were open and just started hearing sirens and screeching tires," he said.

"A car came around the corner, coming south down Archibald right in front of the Roof Mart building and he lost control … and he smashed into a truck in the Roof Mart lot," he said.

Police block streets in St. Boniface following a chase Monday morning. (Trevor Brine/CBC)

The car was immediately pinned by police vehicles but the driver climbed out, jumped across one of the police cars, then ran down the street, McCauley said.

"I've never seen anything like that. It was unbelievable," he said. 

"Maybe 30 seconds later, we heard a whole bunch of gun shots. I couldn't see anything because it was further [away]," McCauley added.

"What police had said to us is that he fired at them and they returned fire."

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With files from Erin Brohman