Manitoba

Police watchdog says Winnipeg officer was justified in shooting man last October

A Winnipeg police officer who shot a man last October was found to be justified in their actions by an investigation by Manitoba's Independent Investigations Unit.

Man was shot in the shoulder, sent to hospital with gunshot wound and possibly self-inflicted cuts to neck

The IIU has concluded an investigation into a police shooting that may have occurred shortly after finding Winnipeg's 32nd homicide victim of 2019. (Riley Laychuk/CBC)

A Winnipeg police officer who shot a man last October was found to be justified in their actions, after an investigation by Manitoba's police watchdog.

On Oct. 18, 2019, members of the Winnipeg Police Service responded to a 911 call about a domestic disturbance, and found a woman lying face down on the floor.

According to a release by the Independent Investigation Unit of Manitoba, police called for medical help after seeing the woman was unresponsive.

Police soon found a man in the bathroom, who approached the officers while raising a knife "in an overhand grip," said the IIU, which led to a police officer shooting the man and hitting him in the shoulder.

A second officer also used a stun gun, but the IIU did not specify whether it made contact with the man.

Police provided first aid to the man before he was sent to hospital with a gunshot wound and possibly self-inflicted cuts to his neck.

After reviewing various reports and police regulations, interviewing the officers involved and the man who was shot, the civilian director in charge of the investigation found the decision to shoot the man was "justified, unavoidable, and necessary to prevent death or injury" to the other officers.

The man who was shot is still before the court on charges stemming from the incident, so the IIU's investigation report will not be available until after sentencing.

Information about the incident was released by the IIU on Oct. 21, which lines up with the timeline of Winnipeg's 32nd homicide of 2019.

Karen (Janey) Letniak, 48, was found dead inside a Winnipeg home by police, when they responded to a domestic disturbance in the Elmwood area in the morning of Oct. 18.

Police did not release details on what transpired, but said responding officers had a confrontation with a man that resulted in him being shot.

A 26-year-old man was facing charges, police said at the time.