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Sunday, October 19, 2008

Mother of man who died after taser incident upset with wait for answers

October 19, 2008
The Canadian Press

KAMLOOPS, B.C. — The mother of a man who died a year ago after he was stunned by a Taser at Vancouver's airport says she's upset about how long it's taken to get answers about her son's death.

Robert Dziekanski collapsed and died after being shocked by a Taser as four Mounties confronted the agitated man early on the morning of Oct. 14, 2007.

About 75 people attended a memorial for Dziekanski that was held over the weekend in Kamloops, B.C., where Dziekanski's mother, Zofia Cisowski, lives.

Cisowski said she's upset about the length of time it has taken to find out exactly what happened. "I'm very disappointed, because they delayed (the inquiry) almost one year," said Cisowski. "I'm sick about it, frustrated, of course."

Dziekanski's death made headlines around the world and prompted heavy scrutiny of the RCMP and its use of Tasers after eyewitness video was made public. The video showed officers shocking Dziekanski within seconds of their arrival at the airport. The incident prompted several investigations, including a two-part public inquiry in Vancouver.

The first phase, examining Taser use in general, wrapped up earlier this year and a report is scheduled to be handed over to the province's attorney general by Nov. 30. But the second phase examining the circumstances of Dziekanski's death, which was scheduled to begin Monday, has been delayed until Nov. 12. The inquiry has said the delay was necessary to give the Crown time to decide whether any charges will be laid in the case.

The RCMP has said it can't fully participate in a public inquiry until that has been decided.

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