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Protesters hold banners with a photograph of Myles Gray, who died following a confrontation with police officers in 2015, before the start of a coroner's inquest into his death, in Burnaby, on April 17.DARRYL DYCK/The Canadian Press

Some of the seven Vancouver police officers accused of using too much force on Myles Gray have offered a coroner’s inquest a handful of solutions to avoid another fatal incident like the 33-year-old’s 2015 death.

Most of the officers testifying over the past week have been asked some variation of what they or their department could have done differently the day Mr. Gray died after a violent struggle with officers that left him with a broken nose, eye socket, rib and voice box, as well as brain bleeding and a ruptured testicle.

None of the constables have highlighted the need for more specialized training for front-line officers to deal with those in mental-health crises. (Family testimony at the inquest has suggested Mr. Gray, who had been diagnosed with bipolar disorder in high school, was presenting as slightly manic in the days leading up to the incident.)

Constable Derek Cain, who was a paramedic for a decade before joining the force, said more specialized ambulances on the road could help improve the time it takes to sedate someone in Mr. Gray’s state.

Constable Cain, who was the sixth or seventh officer on the scene that day, testified that he and his colleagues dragged Mr. Gray out from under a large bush after he went unconscious during the initial struggle.

He said he resuscitated him once and he became lucid and calm before struggling again, at which point he was pinned down again and eventually went unconscious again and then died. Constable Cain and his colleague, another paramedic-turned-constable, attempted CPR before firefighters and paramedics took over.

During that time, the inquest heard, Constable Cain radioed multiple times asking for the whereabouts of specialized ambulance crews, known as Advanced Life Support units.

Reflecting on the call, he said he has had nightmares for the past 7½ years. Constable Cain, who now investigates collisions, said he didn’t know how many ALS ambulances are on the roads in and around Vancouver. But, he said, adding 100 could help meet the demand for their specialized services.

Constable Beau Spencer, a fourth-generation officer who was Constable Cain’s partner that day, also said more ALS units could help in similar situations.

Constable Kory Folkestad, who now investigates stolen goods, testified that he is constantly pondering what could have been done differently that day. Constable Folkestad, who was the second or third officer on the scene and testified that he still battles cognitive issues after Mr. Gray knocked him out that day, said if 10 constables had confronted the suspect at once they could have arrested him “quicker and better.”

But, he conceded while testifying, it is difficult to balance staff resources with the risk to the public when marshalling this number of officers for an incident. Constable Folkestad also testified that he believes equipping officers with body cameras would help. He testified that footage from that day could have “painted a picture” of Mr. Gray’s actions and how “quickly things can happen.”

Constable Spencer, who said he sprained his wrist throwing punches that day, and Constable Joshua Wong, who had just joined the force at the time, agreed that body cameras should be adopted.

Mr. Gray’s mother, Margie Reed, has told The Globe and Mail she also wants the jury to recommend Vancouver equip its front-line officers with body cameras, an oversight tool the provincial Independent Investigations Office is also on record as supporting. (Vancouver city council passed a motion in December paving the way for all front-line officers to be wearing these cameras by 2025.)

Seven of the officers who hit or tried to pin down Mr. Gray remain on active duty but face professional misconduct charges of using too much force, with hearings slated for this fall. That process began after a criminal probe by the provincial Independent Investigations Office ended two years ago.

The civilian-led watchdog, which investigates deaths or serious injuries at the hands of police, recommended charges against the seven, but Crown prosecutors announced that it was hamstrung by the “incomplete” and “inconsistent” accounts police had given investigators from the office.

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