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Officer did not speak to man during arrest, hearing told

Jul 27 2012

Despite his training, Const. Brendan Robinson gave no verbal commands while arresting Tyler Archer, and instead pushed Archer to the ground, a public hearing was told.

The hearing, which is looking into the use of force by Robinson and Const. Chris Bowser as they arrested Archer in March 2010, was told that the Victoria officer studied at the Justice Institute of B.C. in New Westminster, completing his training in 2009.

Robinson's notes from his classes were introduced by his lawyer, David Butcher.

"It says to tell the subject to turn away once, instruct subject to go into prone position - you don't take it to mean tackle, do you?" asked Archer's lawyer, Richard Neary.

A video that captured the incident and was posted online shows Bowser telling Archer twice to get down on the ground. Archer sits down shortly after Bowser's command. Robinson then pushes him to the ground.

Neary pressed Robinson on his lack of verbal commands, asking: "How is he supposed to know what you want him to do?"

"It happened so quickly, I don't know why not," Robinson said.

Later, Neary paused the video on a frame showing Bowser had his handcuffs out before Robinson intervened.

Neary said the training Robinson received says control should be gained before handcuffs are taken out. When Bowser took out his handcuffs, Neary said, he showed he was in control of the situation. Robinson said he didn't see the handcuffs.

"With what you know now, would you act the same way?" Neary asked.

"There could have been other options," Robinson said.

The hearing was ordered by the Office of the Police Compliant Commissioner. Three investigations have cleared the officers.

mkaralis@timescolonist.com

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