Langley RCMP Cleared In Crash That Killed Victor Melo Duarte

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Victor Melo Duarte, a father of two, was killed in Langley in a crash involving a driver trying to elude RCMP. (LinkedIn)
Victor Melo Duarte, a father of two, was killed in Langley in a crash involving a driver trying to elude RCMP. (LinkedIn)

Langley RCMP have been cleared in a deadly crash that began when a man fled a police traffic stop earlier this year, concluded B.C.'s independent police watchdog.

On Oct. 29, RCMP spotted a pickup truck related to a prohibited driver and tried to stop the vehicle. The driver sped away and three minutes later, crashed into another vehicle which then struck a third vehicle, said the report released Friday by the Independent Investigations Office (IIO).

Victor Melo Duarte, 47, of Delta, who was driving the third vehicle, died at the scene. Duarte, a father of two, was on his way home from work, reported CTV News.

The driver of the pickup truck, who was trying to elude police, suffered serious injuries.

According to the IIO, two unmarked RCMP vehicles with emergency equipment followed the pickup truck for less than a minute before they pulled over.

The lead RCMP driver "abandoned following the pickup truck when he determined that the vehicle was not going to stop and after concluding that the danger to the public in engaging in any pursuit outweighed the need to immediately apprehend the driver," found the IIO.

Chief Civilian Director Richard Rosenthal concluded there was no evidence that any police officer committed an offence related to Duarte's death.

The RCMP continue to investigate the circumstances related to the driver of the pickup truck.

The IIO's mandate is to investigate any cases of death or serious injury involving police in B.C.

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