The use of lethal force by local police agencies to neutralize terror suspect Aaron Driver in August was justified, a review has found.
Strathroy-Caradoc Police issued a statement on Wednesday morning laying out the timeline of their investigation as well as just what happened during the final moments of Driver’s life.
Most of the facts contained in the statement were already part of the public record, but officers gave a detailed account of what happened when they confronted the alleged homegrown terror suspect.
Officers say the RCMP was notified about a threatening online video in which the suspect was believed to be in the final stages of planning an attack on an urban centre during the morning or evening rush hour.
Police say their investigation lead them to Aaron Driver of Strathroy and members of the Strathroy-Caradoc and London Police Services as well as the OPP and RCMP responded to his home and place of employment.
Officers say in their statement that late in the afternoon on August 10th, a taxi pulled up at Driver’s home and Driver got into the backseat while carrying a backpack.
It was at that time officers say the RCMP blocked the taxi in, preventing it from leaving and then told the taxi driver and Driver to get out of the vehicle.
They say as an officer approached the taxi, Driver detonated an improvised explosive device. At that point, Driver got out of the car and didn’t follow officers’ directions.
It was at that point RCMP officers fatally shot Driver, fearing he would detonate a second device.
After the incident, the OPP and Strathroy-Caradoc Police Service investigated the shooting to determine if it was justified under Canadian law. Once their investigation was complete, the Crown and the Ministry of the Attorney General Office also reviewed the case.
Officers say the Crown upheld the initial investigation’s finding that the use of lethal force was justified.