Winnipeg Police Service released new details Friday about the man shot by police earlier in the week, while noting the department’s success in keeping such incidents quite rare.
An on-duty police officer shot 25-year-old Joshua Pardy around 12:20 p.m. Monday in the second-floor skywalk at 266 Graham Ave., quite close to WPS headquarters, police say. WPS Chief Danny Smyth said the shooting happened after a man was allegedly spotted with a homemade spear. Witness reports had stated the man refused to drop that weapon.
“That was a unique weapon, a three-foot bar, with essentially scissors duct-taped on the end of it. Nothing surprises me that can be functioning as a weapon these days but that was a unique one,” said Smyth.
Pardy, the suspect and shooting victim, has since been released from hospital and arrested. He was charged with five counts of assault with a weapon and possessing a weapon for a dangerous purpose.
Pardy remained in custody on Friday, said Smyth.
But any use of force by Winnipeg Police is quite rare, especially involving a gun, according to data discussed at Friday’s Winnipeg Police Board meeting.
“I think it speaks of our professionalism,” said Smyth. “It’s usually between 750 and 850 events that we had to present force or use force (each year). Put in context, with the 205,000 calls that we (annually respond to), those are respectable numbers. I was happy we had no lethal force encounters last year.”
Police responded to 205,641 calls for help last year, using force or presenting a weapon in 855 incidents, according to a WPS report. That means police used force in 0.42% of their responses, or one out of every 240 calls.
“This is well within our expected ranges,” said Smyth, noting there was no spike in the use of other weapons either.
The vast majority of force incidents involved officers using their hands, not lethal weapons. Police used open hands on a subject 688 times and fists 337 times last year, according to the report. Weapons like Tasers, batons, pepper spray and canine bites were threatened or used 250 times.
Police pointed weapons at people about 187 times but no officers shot or killed any resistant individuals in 2016, which saw an 8.4% decrease in force incidents from the previous year.
Published at Fri, 05 May 2017 22:47:06 +0000