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Thursday, January 22, 2009

Wouldn't have changed anything, guard tells taser inquiry

January 22, 2009
The Canadian Press

VANCOUVER – The border officer who told Robert Dziekanski's mother that her son likely wasn't at Vancouver airport told an inquiry into the death of the Polish man that she wouldn't have handled the situation differently.

Dziekanski's mother and a friend waited for hours at the airport in October of 2007 before leaving, only to learn the next day her son had died in the airport arrivals area after being jolted by an RCMP Taser.

Border officer Tina Zadravec says when she got a phone call from Rick Hutchinson, the mother's friend, she quickly looked in several spots in a secondary screening area, but saw no sign of Dziekanski.

She told the inquiry she made several suggestions to Hutchinson, including calling the airline or heading home and waiting for a phone call.

The inquiry has heard Dziekanski wandered around the customs area for hours, but Zadravec says she made no attempt to page him or make a telephone call to confirm whether he was in the customs area.

The border officer says she saw Dziekanski later in the evening, but then made no effort to try contacting Hutchinson or Dziekanski's mother.

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