B.C.’s police watchdog says it is investigating the death of a man on a highway near Prince George on Thursday.
The Independent Investigations Office (IIO) — which steps in to investigate when an interaction with police in the province ends with someone being killed or seriously injured — said at around 4:45 p.m., Prince George RCMP received a report of a man whom police described was experiencing a mental health crisis.
The man was located in a vehicle south of the scales on Highway 97, the IIO said, and officers contained the scene and stopped highway traffic.
“An interaction occurred between the man and police outside of the vehicle which resulted in the officer firing his weapon,” reads an IIO statement.
“The man was shot and police provided medical attention until Emergency Health Services arrived.”
He later died of his injuries, IIO said, adding it is now investigating the actions of police.
The highway has re-opened to single-lane alternating traffic, and traffic delays may continue through the night.
⚠️ UPDATE – <a href=”https://twitter.com/hashtag/BCHwy97?src=hash&ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw”>#BCHwy97</a> is now operating at single lane alternating traffic between Fifteen Mile road and Reeves Drive following an earlier police incident. <br><br>Please watch for traffic control and expect delays. <a href=”https://twitter.com/hashtag/CityofPG?src=hash&ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw”>#CityofPG</a> <br><br>ℹ️ For more info:<a href=”https://t.co/GDKWef68X1″>https://t.co/GDKWef68X1</a>
Earlier Thursday evening, the highway was closed between 15 Mile Road and Reeves Drive, according to a DriveBC update posted just before 7 p.m.
A line of more than60 vehicles were observed along the stretch of highway south of Prince George, on the way to Quesnel. No detour was available.