LETHBRIDGE: The Alberta Serious Incident Response Team (ASIRT) has completed their investigation into the fatal shooting of a 26-year old Bhutanese man in Lethbridge last summer.
They have determined that the actions of the two officers involved in the incident were justified and that they did not commit a criminal offence.
On July 15th of 2012 Lethbridge Regional Police were called to a city home by family members of the man. They reported that he was intoxicated and trying to fight people inside the home. They also told police that he had a knife and was threatening people with it.
The first two officers on the scene spoke with the family outside and then proceeded into the home, where they found the man in a small living room still holding the knife. They told him to drop the weapon, but he ignored them, raised the knife above his head and advanced on them, at which point they fired a total of seven shots, hitting him with five.
The man was taken to hospital where he was pronounced dead.
After reviewing dispatch records, communications recordings, forensic evidence and speaking to members of the Canadian Bhutanese Society, ASIRT came to the conclusion that the individual posed a credible threat to the officers.
ASIRT Executive Director Clifton Purvis stated, "This finding does not diminish the devastating loss that the affected person's family has suffered. The sympathies of myself, and the members of the Alberta Serious Incident Response Team, go out to the family, friends of the affected person and Lethbridge Bhutanese community.
Purvis noted that there will now be a fatality inquiry, in which they will examine what could have been done differently to prevent the loss of life.