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Abbotsford Police cleared in crash where fleeing driver hit another vehicle

Officers did not pursue driver and their actions were ‘appropriate,’ says police watchdog
A pickup truck was rear-ended Feb. 23 on Highway 1 in Abbotsford by a driver in an SUV who was fleeing from police. (Ben Lypka/Abbotsford News)

The Independent Investigations Office (IIO) of BC has concluded that the actions of police did not contribute to a crash on Highway 1 in Abbotsford on Feb. 23.

In a press release issued Monday (Feb. 28), the IIO said its chief civilian director reviewed evidence, including video footage and medical records, and determined that the actions of police “were appropriate.”

The incident began at 12:10 p.m., when the gang crime unit tried to stop a black SUV heading west on Highway 1 at Bradner Road.

RELATED: Driver flees twice from police in Abbotsford, crashes into another car on Highway 1

The driver didn’t stop, and police didn’t pursue. Ten minutes later, another officer saw the vehicle parked on the eastbound shoulder of the highway at the Mt. Lehman exit.

The driver was out of the vehicle, but when he saw police, he got back into the SUV and again drove away.

Shortly after, he crashed into the back of a Chevy Silverardo pickup truck on the freeway east of Mt. Lehman Road.

Both drivers were taken to hospital with injuries that were not life-threatening.

The IIO said dashcam footage from two uninvolved civilian vehicles and video from a police vehicle confirmed there was no police pursuit, and the SUV was not being followed when the collision occurred.

“The actions of the driver of the SUV were solely responsible for both the collision and resulting injuries. The IIO investigation is now complete,” the release states.

No charges have yet been laid against the driver of the SUV.

The IIO investigates all police-involved incidents that result in serious harm or death.

RELATED: Driver released from hospital after being struck by SUV fleeing from police in Abbotsford

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Vikki Hopes

About the Author: Vikki Hopes

I have been a journalist for almost 40 years, and have been at the Abbotsford News since 1991.
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