Richard Drought, B.C. Mountie, Charged In Car Chase Shooting

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VICTORIA - Criminal charges have been laid against a Cranbrook, B.C., Mountie accused of firing a shot into a vehicle containing two people.

The B.C. Criminal Justice Branch says Const. Richard Drought is facing charges of intentionally discharging a firearm and being reckless to the safety of another person.

The charges arise out of an investigation into the Oct. 2, 2012 incident by the Independent Investigations Office.

After completing the review, IIO chief civilian director Richard Rosenthal forwarded a report to Crown counsel about the incident, which later led to the charges.

The report said Drought was investigating a carjacking complaint and chased a vehicle to a crashing stop on the outskirts of Cranbrook.

"At the conclusion of a police vehicular pursuit, the officer discharged his firearm. The adult male driver sustained non-life threatening injuries," stated the IIO report.

The other occupant, a woman, wasn't hurt. Both people were arrested.

In his April 2013 report, Rosenthal said he only forwards a report to the Crown if he considers that an officer may have committed an offence.

A statement from the B.C. Criminal Justice Branch said the charge assessment review was conducted by a senior prosecutor who does not work in the same region as the officer.

Drought is due to return to court in Cranbrook on Sept. 16.

The officer is on administrative from his post in Cranbrook.

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