Watchdog’s Probe of Thunder Bay Police Systemic Racism Reports to be Release in August 2018

Published on Tuesday, June 26 2018, the CBC News article, ‘OIPRD says it will now release report into allegations of Thunder Bay police systemic racism in August‘, confirms that Ontario’s Independent Police Review Director, Gerry McNeilly’s “investigation was scheduled to be completed — and its report, including recommendations released — by the end of June. But a spokesperson for the OIPRD told CBC News in an email that the report is now slated to be released in August as the final draft is still being finished.”

The unprecedented investigation of the Thunder Bay Police Service was launched on November 3, 2016. The systemic review by Ontario’s police watchdog was prompted by complaints that the drowning death of Stacey DeBungee in 2015, was too quickly deemed non-criminal by police. Falconers LLP represents the DeBungee family and the Rainy River First Nations community.

Background: On October 19, 2015, Stacy DeBungee’s body was found in the McIntyre River, in Thunder Bay, ON. Within hours of the discovery of his body and before the autopsy was conducted, the Thunder Bay Police Service issued press releases ruling out foul play and declaring the death “non-criminal”. The OIPRD Report chronicles how police failed to take the most basic investigative steps such as protecting the scene, interviewing witnesses and seizing evidence. Leadership right up to the Chief of Police are identified and a trail of “organizational deficiencies” are laid out in the Report.

In the News

OIPRD says it will now release report into allegations of Thunder Bay police systemic racism in August    CBC News, June 26, 2018

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