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A civilian oversight agency in Ontario announced Sunday that it is investigating reports of a 49-year-old woman being seriously injured when a mounted Toronto police officer allegedly trampled her during the government crackdown on protesters in Ottawa.
“On Friday, February 18 at approximately 5:14 p.m. there was an interaction between a Toronto Police Service officer on a horse and a 49-year-old woman on Rideau Street and Mackenzie Avenue,” read the press release from the Special Investigations Unit (SIU).
SIU is an independent government agency that investigates the conduct of police officers that may have resulted in death, serious injury, sexual assault and/or the discharge of a firearm at a person.
The agency also announced that it is looking into reports that Vancouver Police Department officers, who were brought in to help clear the lingering “Freedom Convoy” protests, discharged non-lethal firearms at individuals. No serious injuries were reported from the projectiles, but SIU requested that anyone who had been struck by one to contact them.
Horses are brought in to disperse the crowd in front of Parliament Hill in Ottawa, on Feb. 18, 2022. (Steve Russell/Toronto Star)
Six investigators and two forensic investigators have been assigned to the cases, the SIU further explained, and urged anyone with video or other information about the incidents to reach out online or by calling 1-800-787-8529.
Video circulated widely online Friday of a woman apparently being run over by a police horse while she was participating in demonstrations against vaccine mandates in the Canadian capital. Rumors swirled on social media following the incident that the woman had died from the encounter, though such reports proved to be inaccurate.
“We respect the oversight process and will always fully cooperate,” the Ottawa Police tweeted a statement regarding SIU’s investigations.
“Now that the SIU has invoked their mandate we are prohibited from commenting until the SIU has completed their investigation,” the Toronto Police told Fox News Digital.
Police in Ottawa, Ontario walk through the crowd at the “Freedom Convoy” (Fox News Digital/Lisa Bennatan)
Ottawa Police Service said Sunday that 191 arrests have been made so far in connection to the protest. Of those arrested, 103 were charged, and the main charges were mischief and obstruction. Of the remaining, 89 have been released on conditions that “include a boundary they are not allowed to attend,” and the others were released unconditionally. So far, 57 vehicles have been towed.
The Ottawa police did not immediately respond to a request for further comment.