The trial of a Toronto police officer charged for refusing to help stop a young man from taking his own life has been quashed, after an Ontario Superior Court judge found his failure to act did not amount to criminal breach of trust.
The decision reverses a lower court’s ruling last year that found there was enough evidence that a jury could believe Const. Kyle Upjohn breached the public trust and avoided his duty to preserve a life — indeed, “drove the other way” — and that a trial should proceed.
Upjohn was sitting in his marked police vehicle on the afternoon of Feb. 2, 2016 when approached by a concerned citizen alerting him to a young man attempting to hang himself in the park.
Instead of helping, Upjohn falsely claimed he was on another call, told the man to dial 911, then drove away, according to a Jan. 25 decision by Justice Maureen Forestell.