Vancouver police cannot refuse to be questioned by IIO investigators, judge rules

After a standoff that's lasted for nearly two years, a judge has ordered seven Vancouver officers to cooperate with investigators probing a fatal police shooting.

In a decision issued Thursday, B.C. Supreme Court Justice Miriam Gropper said it was clear Vancouver police have been operating under a "misapprehension" of their legal duties by refusing to sit for interviews with the Independent Investigations Office.

"An obligation to co-operate fully with the IIO must be an essential element of the functioning of a police oversight agency," Gropper wrote.

"If co-operation by the witness officers is discretionary, the goal of the IIO is diminished or extinguished. There will be no arm's-length investigation of an incident if it is at the discretion of the witness officers."

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