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Friday, January 23, 2009

Robert Knipstrom taser case may wrap soon

January 23, 2009
Mike Chouinard, The Times

The commission looking into complaints against the RCMP does not expect its new Taser investigation to affect its current case looking into the death of Chilliwack man Robert Knipstrom in November, 2007.

A spokesperson for the Commission for Public Complaints Against the RCMP (CPC) told the Times on Friday their new investigation--which will look into several older cases in which someone died following the RCMP's use of a conducted energy weapon (CEW), commonly referred to as a Taser--will have no impact on the Knipstrom file.

"We should be wrapping up that one fairly soon, the Knipstrom one," CPC spokesperson Nelson Kalil said.

CPC chair Paul E. Kennedy announced the new investigation on Thursday, which will examine seven or eight old cases in which someone died following the use of CEWs, which the RCMP added to their arsenal in 2001.

Robert Knipstrom was involved in an altercation with police after he apparently became agitated while at an Airport Road business on Nov. 19, 2007. RCMP members used pepper spray, a baton and a Taser to try to subdue him. Knipstrom spent several days on life support in Surrey Memorial Hospital before succumbing to his injuries on Nov. 24.

As well, the B.C. Coroners Service will be conducting an investigation into the Knipstrom case but has not yet set a time frame. However, its website (www.pssg.gov.bc.ca/coroners/index.htm) still has not listed Knipstrom's case on its 2009 schedule or on the list of inquests to be announced.

1 comment:

Frank said...

I noticed on TV video or news photos Mr. Knipstrom was secured (possibly handcuffed) on a stretcher face-down. I wonder if this position was dangerous to him, as he was severely injured and may have had a problem breathing.

Another question is why he was beaten so seriously. I understand no RCMP were injured so it appears Mr. Knipstrom was not combative.