16-year-old girl dies after being shot by Winnipeg police
Girl, along with 4 other teenagers, allegedly involved in liquor store theft before shooting
A 16-year-old girl who died after being shot by Winnipeg police was driving a stolen vehicle used in the robbery of a Liquor Mart, police say.
A group of five teens, all 15 or 16 years old, are accused of robbing the store in the Sage Creek neighbourhood just before 5:30 p.m. on Wednesday.
They allegedly stole alcohol while threatening to harm staff, before leaving in a stolen SUV.
A police cruiser that responded to the robbery was rammed by the SUV, which then sped off, police said.
Other police units responded and gave chase. The SUV collided with a number of other cars before a final crash brought it to a stop at the intersection of Lagimodiere Boulevard and Fermor Avenue.
WATCH | Raw video shot by passerby moments after police shooting:
Officers approached the stopped SUV and the girl was shot, police said.
Police Chief Danny Smyth did not say how many shots were fired or how many officers fired their guns. He also couldn't say why police opened fire.
All of that is being investigated by the Independent Investigation Unit of Manitoba, which looks into police-involved serious incidents in the province.
'Two officer-involved shootings'
The girl was given first aid at the scene and taken to hospital in critical condition but pronounced dead there, police said.
The four other people in the SUV — two boys, age 15 and 16, and two girls, age 15 and 16 — have been charged with multiple offences, including robbery, wearing a disguise, possession of stolen property and failure to comply with prior court orders.
About six minutes elapsed between the time when the call came in about the robbery and when the pursuit ended, Smyth said. None of the other teens, officers or people in other cars involved in the collisions were injured.
The SUV had been stolen on Tuesday from a home in the community of Whytewold, Man.
On Wednesday, before the theft in Sage Creek, the SUV was spotted at a robbery at a Liquor Mart in Transcona, police said. It later crashed into a fence in the area of Keewatin Street and William Avenue W. before taking off.
The IIU is also looking into another fatal shooting by a Winnipeg officer. Police were called early Thursday to a home in the city's North End about a man with a gun.
The man confronted the officers who then shot him, police said. The man was rushed to hospital where he died.
"Two officer-involved shootings, one in southeast Winnipeg and one in the North End of Winnipeg, about 11 hours apart," said Zane Tessler, the IIU's civilian director.
"[It's] challenging on its own and compounded with the COVID-19 influence now as well."
More than a dozen officers connected to the two shootings will be pulled from regular duties in the next few days "so that we can ensure that they are okay," Smyth said.
"The vast majority of these officers have never been involved in anything like this."
WATCH | Holly Caruk's report on the shootings:
With files from Meaghan Ketcheson