Special Investigations Unit (SIU)

Special Investigations Unit (SIU)

August 30, 2005 14:51 ET

SIU Concludes Toronto Shooting Investigation

Attention: News Editor TORONTO--(CCNMatthews - Aug. 30, 2005) - James Cornish, Director of the Special Investigations Unit (SIU), has determined that the fatal shooting of 34-year-old Ucal Lauzon by a Toronto Police Service (TPS) officer was legally justified.

Mr. Lauzon died from a gunshot wound to the torso. His sister, Pandora Whyte, had been stabbed by Mr. Lauzon and died. His niece, Marcia Whyte, had also been stabbed by Mr. Lauzon and eventually recovered from her injuries.

The SIU investigation revealed that at approximately 6:00 p.m. on May 27, 2005, Mr. Lauzon appeared at 1898 Sheppard Avenue West, the home of Pandora Whyte. Pandora Whyte's 15-year-old daughter was also present. Due to past problems, Ms. Whyte asked Mr. Lauzon to leave the home but he refused. She then telephoned another daughter, Marcia Whyte, and told her of Mr. Lauzon's unwanted presence. At about 11:02 p.m., Marcia Whyte called the police and reported that she was on her way to the townhouse and asked the police to respond. She told the police that she believed her uncle was mentally unstable and had been violent in the past. Police, fire and emergency medical personnel were dispatched to the call.

During this time, Mr. Lauzon fatally stabbed Pandora Whyte in her living room. Mr. Lauzon had also tried to hurt the 15-year-old teen but she was able to escape and call police about the assault. Local youths prevented Mr. Lauzon from capturing his niece and returning her to the townhouse. The young girl called police again and told them her mother was hurt and covered in blood. By this point several family members had arrived at the home, including Marcia Whyte.

Marcia Whyte entered her mother's house only to be confronted by Mr. Lauzon. She was stabbed numerous times. Ms. Whyte was able to escape through a side door and collapse outside on the sidewalk.

At 11:05 p.m., the first police units arrived and found Marcia Whyte outside suffering from serious stab wounds. The Emergency Task Force unit was also called after Mr. Lauzon was seen inside the townhouse carrying a knife. A group of officers entered the home and saw Mr. Lauzon holding a knife and standing close to Pandora Whyte. She appeared to have been stabbed and in critical condition.

All the officers drew their firearms and ordered Mr. Lauzon to drop the knife. When he turned toward one of the officers who had entered through the front door, the subject officer fired twice and struck Mr. Lauzon. Dispatch records show the officer fired at 11:12 p.m.

Mr. Lauzon was handcuffed and taken to hospital where he later died. Pandora Whyte was pronounced dead at the scene.

It should be noted that several area residents placed themselves in danger while attempting to intervene and save the victims of the attack. Their efforts likely saved the life of the 15-year-old girl.

Director Cornish stated, "The threat of lethal force was met with lethal force. The involved officers had ample reason to believe that Mr. Lauzon was a dangerous person and that he had just gravely wounded two people. They were duty bound to enter into an inherently dangerous situation and they did their duty. When they entered, the officers all saw that Mr. Lauzon had a knife and they all perceived his last motions to be the commencement of an attack."
The SIU is a civilian agency that investigates circumstances involving police and civilians which have resulted in serious injury, sexual assault or death. Under Part VII, Section 113, of the Police Services Act, the Director of the SIU has the sole authority to decide whether or not charges are warranted based on the findings of a complete investigation. The Director's decision is reported to the Attorney General.

-30-

Rose Bliss
SIU Communications/Service des communications, UES
Telephone/No de telephone: 416-622-2342 or/ou 1-800-787-8529
IN: JUSTICE

Contact Information

  • Rose Bliss, Communications Manager, Special Investigations Unit
    Primary Phone: 416-622-2342