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WRPS sergeant launches $2.5M lawsuit against SIU

The officer alleges negligence in the SIU investigation which saw charges against him withdrawn
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Waterloo Regional Police Sergeant Richard Dorling is suing Ontario's police watchdog for $2.5 million after criminal charges laid against him were withdrawn.

The charges stemmed from an incident that occurred on March 13, 2018 involving a stolen vehicle that was located.

The suspect in the case was shot in the leg by Dorling, during the encounter. The suspect was later found guilty of six offences, including possession of stolen firearms.

The Special Investigations Unit (SIU) was called in following the incident. Dorling was arrested in November that year, and faced charges of attempted murder.

Earlier this year in May, the Ontario Court of Justice withdrew all charges. During the trial, Justice Toni Skarica said the sergeant did nothing wrong and that he had reasonable grounds to believe a fully armed suspect was fleeing a crime scene.

Dorling's lawsuit claims he continues to suffer from "severe emotional, psychological and/or mental trauma," according to The Record.

The lawsuit also claims the sergeant had suffered a loss of income and a loss of promotional opportunities.

The SIU issued a statement to The Record, saying that they are not aware that a lawsuit was filed, and they would not comment on the matter.

In his lawsuit, Dorling names the Crown---which operates the SIU---and three individuals: former SIU director Tony Loparco, Oliver Gordon and Dean Seymour. Gordon had supervised the investigation while Seymour was the lead investigator. Loparco is now the president of the Ontario Crown Attorneys’ Association.

The lawsuit alleges multiple instances of negligence by the SIU, as well as the failure to consult with experts in areas such as forensic pathology and use of force. It also claims the investigation had favoured information from the suspect despite major inconsistencies.

570 NEWS has reached out to the SIU and Dorling's lawyer for comment. 

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