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Ontario’s SIU investigating death of 18-year-old female pedestrian

Police tape marks a crime scene in this file photo.

JOHN LEHMANN/The GLOBE AND MAI

Ontario's Special Investigations Unit is investigating the death of an 18-year-old female pedestrian who was struck by an unmarked police vehicle in Scarborough Wednesday night.

While the collision happened on the territory of the Toronto Police Service, the vehicle, a black Ford pickup truck, belonged to the York Regional Police, SIU spokeswoman Monica Hudon said.

The woman was crossing St. Clair Ave. East, between Warden and Pharmacy avenues, walking from north to south, when she was hit by the truck as it headed east around 8:20 p.m., according to the SIU.

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The York Regional Officer driving the pickup was on duty at the time, the SIU said.

Firefighters and EMS ambulances were called but the woman was pronounced dead at the scene, according to Toronto Emergency Medical Services.

The front of the pickup, especially on the driver's side, was heavily damaged by the accident, its hood and bumper crumpled and the left headlight dislodged from its socket.

On the ground, a woman's purse and a black boot lay on the pavement amid glass shards and metal fragments.

Several Toronto police squad cars closed traffic in both directions.

Local resident Judy Webb said the victim lived in the area.

"It's terrible. Just terrible, young girl like that," Ms. Webb told City News. "Her poor father just found out. It's very upsetting."

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The SIU is called when there are civilian fatalities or serious injuries involving police.

Seven SIU investigators, two forensic investigators and a collision reconstructionist have been assigned to the case. The woman's autopsy is to take place Thursday.

In addition to the SIU probe, York Regional Police and the Toronto Police Service are conducting parallel investigations into the incident.

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About the Author
National reporter

Tu Thanh Ha is based in Toronto and writes frequently about judicial, political and security issues. He spent 12 years as a correspondent for the Globe and Mail in Montreal, reporting on Quebec politics, organized crime, terror suspects, space flights and native issues. More

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