Simon Beaulieu, police officer, charged in death of cyclist Guy Blouin
Quebec City officer hit cyclist while driving police cruiser in September 2014
A Quebec City police officer has been charged following a fatal collision with a cyclist last fall.
Simon Beaulieu is charged with criminal negligence causing death and dangerous driving causing death, Crown prosecutors announced Wednesday.
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René Verret, a spokesman for the Crown attorney's office, wouldn't discuss the details of the case, except to say more arrests aren't anticipated. Verret also wouldn't comment on whether it's rare for an officer to be charged.
"I will only say that each case is a different case. In this case, we received the police investigation report by the Sûreté du Québec and we decided that those accusations will be laid. So we cannot compare to other charges. Each case is a different one."
Provincial police investigated
On Sept. 3, 2014, Guy Blouin was biking the wrong way down a street when a police cruiser moved to intercept him.
He was hit by the cruiser and died in hospital several hours later.
Because the case involved local police, the provincial police conducted an investigation. At the time, the Quebec City police department said it was co-operating fully with the investigation.
Beaulieu was promoted about a month after the incident, but a spokesman for Quebec City police said he had passed all required tests before the fatal collision.
The Quebec City police department also said that in light of the charges Beaulieu will be assigned to administrative tasks. He is forbidden from driving an emergency vehicle as long as the case is before the courts.
Blouin's family was notified of the charges on Wednesday.
Welcome news for civic advocacy group
When Blouin died, the Quebec City community of St-Roch held vigils and protests on behalf of the dead cyclist.
"At that time, people were afraid. People were angry," said Pierre Frappier, spokesman for the Comité des Citoyens de St-Roch.
Frappier said he's pleased charges have been laid, but wants to know why it took nearly a year.
"I find it hard to believe it took almost a year for whomever's in charge to finally determine that somebody is guilty of those things, or that he should be charged," he said.
Beaulieu will appear in a Quebec City courtroom on Oct. 16.