PELHAM, Ont. – A 44-year-old officer suffered serious injuries on Thursday in a shooting carried out by Ontario police supervisors involving two members of the Niagara Territory Police Service.
The Special Investigation Unit said it was investigating a "dispute" between two officers, one of whom suffered a gunshot wound around midday in Pelham, Ontario.
"The officer was transported to the hospital for treatment, and then flown to Hamilton General Hospital," said SIU spokesman Monica Hudon.
"Understanding what happened and the relationship between officers was part of the SIU investigation. I can only tell you that there is a fight, and the firearms are exhausted and one officer is beaten. "
Hudon added that the agency had commissioned 11 investigators, including three forensic specialists, for this case. He said it was very early in the investigation and there were no arrests.
He urged anyone with information – especially anyone with video evidence – to contact SIU.
The Niagara area police said in a statement late Thursday that officers were in stable condition. The officer has 28 years of service and his name is "not released at this time," the force said.
"In the spirit of transparency, I have asked the Ontario Provincial Police to determine whether there is a criminal error outside the scope of SIU," Niagara regional police chief Bryan MacCulloch said in a statement.
"The coming days and weeks will try those for the NRPS family and the communities we serve," MacCulloch said. "I request your support for our members and all involved."
Locals said the shooting caused the roar of squad cars racing to the scene in the afternoon.
Robin Zavitz said he was driving home around 1:30 a.m. when he found a police blockade. He said he could see police SUVs in the sewers and many police cars nearby.
"The police car was in front of the sewer and there seemed to be no damage to it," Zavitz said.
"This is scary when a police officer is shot in the middle of the day."
Zavitz said a police car had blocked the road at the same intersection all morning, but added that busy police activities did not occur until late afternoon.
The Niagara area police have tweeted early Thursday that the road would be partially closed for investigation. Hudon said that the investigation was related to a collision that occurred several days earlier, but was not explained further.
Mike Shepherd was driving home when he found the same intersection at around 11:30 a.m. An officer was in his troop car, blocking the road to the east, Shepherd said.
"He said they were investigating road accidents."
A little more than an hour later, he said the ambulance rushed.
The provincial air ambulance service said he was transporting a patient from the St. hospital. Catharines, Ontario, to the trauma center in Hamilton with critical injuries.
SIU is an arm agent that is automatically summoned to investigate reports involving the police where there have been deaths, serious injuries, or suspected sexual violence.