A 41-year-old man died at the courthouse in Trois-Rivières, Québec, on Tuesday, January 21, after having been arrested by Sûreté du Québec (SQ) officers the day before. The Bureau des enquetes independantes (BEI), the agency that examines cases of police harm to civilians in the province, is investigating. They report that the man was arrested on January 20, in Bécancour by two officers of the Sûreté du Québec. According to the BEI, the man taken to the SQ station in Shawinigan where he was detained overnight.
The following day, the same SQ officers took the man to the Trois-Rivières courthouse and he was turned over to courthouse constables. Several hours later, the victim began to show signs of illness in the presence of courthouse constables and the judge who was to hear his case who ordered that the man be taken immediately to a hospital. He died before he could be taken from the courthouse.
The BEI has assigned nine investigators to the case. The BEI are not an independent investigation unit and they receive technical assistance from Montreal police in examining cases. This means that in Québec, police are always involved in investigating police.
This is the second SQ-involved death of a civilian in four days.