NEWS

RCMP assault broke procedure Kelowna trial hears

11/30/2012 10:24 EST | Updated 01/30/2013 05:12 EST
A B.C. RCMP officer had already broken several rules before he kicked a man in the head during an arrest in Kelowna nearly two years ago, an expert witness has testified.

Use-of-force expert Sgt. Jeremy Lane of the Abbotsford Police Department said Const. Geoff Mantler broke several RCMP procedures during the high-risk take down of suspect Buddy Tavares.

Mantler is on trial for assault causing bodily harm for kicking Tavares in the head during the January 2011 incident.

The arrest was caught on video and shows Mantler booting Tavares as he was on his knees and apparently putting his hands down on the pavement.

The court has been told that at the time, RCMP believed Tavares was armed and a serious threat to public safety

Lane testified that Mantler failed to wait for back up, gave commands that could have been confusing and failed to stay a safe distance from the suspect.

Lane also said Mantler used a very high level of force when he kicked Tavares in the head — the kind of force officers are trained to use in high-threat situations.

Lane said it's not clear what level of threat Mantler perceived from Tavares, but in watching the video he said he saw nothing in Tavares' actions showing he intended to attack Mantler.

Lane is expected to continue his testimony Friday.

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