Ottawa police officer suspended without pay for use of excessive force

Ottawa police officer suspended without pay for use of excessive force

Samson Vo pleaded guilty to using excessive force during an arrest last May.

An Ottawa Police Service officer, Samson Vo, will have a week's salary taken away from him. The latter pleaded guilty to a charge of unlawful or unnecessary use of force during an arrest.

Samson Vo is accused of having kneeling, then repeatedly punching a man he was trying to arrest in 2021.

The joint submission by Mr. Vo's attorney and prosecutor Vanessa Stewart was accepted by the hearing officer, Chris Renwick. The officer must waive seven days of eight-hour pay, Renwick said in his ruling on Friday afternoon.

The hearing was conducted by videoconference. Mr. Renwick noted that Constable Vo downplayed his actions in his notes and during his interview with investigators.

The beatings were unnecessary in the circumstances, certainly excessive, and could be interpreted as nothing more than punitive, commented Mr. Renwick

The latter, however, pointed out that since his hiring in 2009, the agent had only had admirable performance evaluations. He also mentioned that Mr. Vo had no disciplinary history and an excellent overall reputation.

It was indicated that the reputation of the officer and that of the police force had were affected by the actions of Mr. Vo, when the course of the arrest was made public, in September 2021, by CBC.

Mr. Renwick said he hoped his decision would temper public sentiment, while restoring public confidence in Constable Vo and the OPS.

In 2021, a police spokesperson told CBC that the arrest was the culmination of a three-day search for Ty Truong, who allegedly assaulted an officer and fled in a vehicle during an attempted arrest following a drug trafficking investigation, among other charges.

During the hearing, it was learned that Constable Vo was knocked to the ground when Mr. Truong began to walk away on the first arrest attempt.

The OPS said that when the suspect was found three days later, he ran to the officer and resisted arrest.

The short security camera video shows three officers arresting Mr. Truong in the 14th floor hallway of the Riverview Place building at 180 Lees Avenue near the University of Ottawa. /p>

It shows that before being pushed to the ground by the police, Mr. Truong wrapped his arms around his body and tilted his head downward . An officer's back then blocks the view, except for Mr. Truong's feet, which do not appear to move.

The video shows two officers rushing after one of them pinned the victim to the ground. The second officer, Samson Vo, then hits Mr. Truong fifteen times while he is still lying face down. A third officer attempts to immobilize his legs. Samson Vo then administers four knee strikes to the victim.

The footage was sent to CBC by a source who feared that police used excessive force during of the arrest.

The OPS said officers treated a cut on the man's wrist, caused by handcuffs, and that he refused further medical attention.

In August 2021, Mr. Truong pleaded guilty to 5 of the 16 charges against him in the case which led to his arrest on May 25.

He was charged with assaulting a peace officer, failing to stop while being chased by a peace officer , driving a vehicle while prohibited from driving, dangerous driving and disobeying an order not to drive or not have the keys to a vehicle. a motor vehicle.

He was sentenced to 152 days in prison.

Mr. Truong, who has an extensive criminal record, was also given a three-year driving ban, as well as an order to submit his DNA.

< em>With information from Kristy Nease, CBC

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