Langley RCMP cleared on any wrongdoing in fatal crash

Police have been found not at fault in the car crash death of 47-year-old Victor Duarte on Oct. 29.

Victor Duarte was killed on Oct. 29 as the result of a driver evading police and crashing into another vehicle. That vehicle in turn struck Duarte's vehicle on 16 Avenue as he was on his way home from work.

Victor Duarte was killed on Oct. 29 as the result of a driver evading police and crashing into another vehicle. That vehicle in turn struck Duarte's vehicle on 16 Avenue as he was on his way home from work.

The Independent Investigation Office has cleared Langley RCMP of any wrong-doing in a fatal crash on 16 Avenue that killed 47-year-old Victor Duarte on Oct. 29.

Duarte, a beloved father and husband from Delta, was killed instantly when the driver of a pickup truck who was fleeing from police drove into an intersection, hitting another vehicle, which in turn hit Duarte’s vehicle.

Duarte’s wife has been given the IIO’s report and has asked for privacy, said IIO Chief Civilian Director Richard Rosenthal on Friday. He made the report and spoke to its conclusions at a press conference in Surrey.

Langley RCMP traffic services was conducting a speed check and Automated Licence Reader enforcement project in the 24000 block of 0 Avenue after residents in the area had complained of speeding.

Around 5:30 p.m., the ALPR identified a passing vehicle, a dark green pickup truck, as being associated to a prohibited driver. That pickup was flagged down by officers and directed to pull over.

Officers attempted to pull the truck over and the driver fled the scene.

Rosenthal said he wouldn’t be releasing the speed of the truck because that is part of a criminal investigation into the driver’s actions.

Two police vehicles pursued the truck, with emergency lights on, travelling more than 100 km/hr on a 60 km/hr road.

But according to the IIO report, the lead vehicle discontinued the pursuit in 36 seconds. The officer deciding to pull over and turn off the lights instead, judging the pursuit as fruitless.

Still, less than three minutes later, a collision involving the pickup truck and two other vehicles took place, leaving Duarte dead and the suspect truck driver seriously injured, said the IIO. Police later said he is a 27-year-old Chilliwack man.

The IIO immediately took over jurisdiction into the actions of the involved Langley RCMP officers. Six IIO investigators went to the scene and two more were brought in for the investigation.

“I’ve concluded there is no criminal violation on part of the officers involved,” said Rosenthal.

He stressed that the role of the IIO is not RCMP policy, in regards to police pursuits, but whether or not there are reasons to pursue criminal charges on the part of police involved.

“Whether or not these officers followed RCMP policy is up to the RCMP,” he said.

Rosenthal said because Langley RCMP continue to investigate and possibly lay criminal charges against the truck driver, he won’t be releasing the names of the officers involved or the suspect driver.

The IIO interviewed witnesses, obtained copies of the radio communications that took place between the involved officers as well as computer aided dispatch records and video footage from the RCMP patrol vehicles.

The RCMP officer who was the lead vehicle in the short pursuit provided a voluntary written statement to the IIO. The second officer who was driving behind the lead vehicle declined to provide a statement.

Just like anyone else, the officers are allowed to refuse to give a statement to the IIO.

This is the first investigation in Langley conducted by the IIO. They took over investigating police-related deaths several months ago. Prior to that, police conducted their own investigations.

The IIO currently hase 11 files, and has closed three.

Just Posted

Adam Hobbs went missing from a Langley work site on Monday, June 14 and may have gone to Vancouver. (Special to the Langley Advance Times)
Family, RCMP seek Abbotsford man missing from Langley job site

Adam Hobbs lives in Abbotsford and is a minor hockey referee

Police were on scene Monday afternoon (June 14) in the area of George Ferguson Way and Ware Street. (John Morrow/Abbotsford News)
Police called out after reports of possible home invasion in Abbotsford

Incident on Monday afternoon at George Ferugson Way and Ware Street

Migrating sockeye in the Fraser River August 7, 2007. (Fisheries and Oceans Canada)
First Nations, commercial, and recreational harvesters join forces to save Fraser River fish

‘We have to work together to rebuild these stocks while there is still time,’ says delegate

The Vancouver Canucks have polled season ticket holders on team name options for the new Abbotsford AHL team.
Vancouver Canucks poll season tickets holders on Abbotsford AHL team name

List asks fans to rank three out of 10 options, also if Abbotsford or Fraser Valley should be used

The Aquilini Investment Group and the city of Abbotsford have agreed to terms on related to management of the Abbotsford Centre.
Aquilini Investment Group awarded Abbotsford Centre contract

Canucks ownership group, city of Abbotsford come to agreement on terms

People watch a car burn during a riot following game 7 of the NHL Stanley Cup final in downtown Vancouver, B.C., in this June 15, 2011 photo. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Geoff Howe
10 years ago: Where were you during the 2011 Vancouver Stanley Cup Riots?

Smashed-in storefronts, looting, garbage can fires and overturned cars some of the damage remembered today

A worker, at left, tends to a customer at a cosmetics shop amid the COVID-19 pandemic Thursday, May 20, 2021, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez)
Half of cosmetics sold in Canada, U.S. contain toxic chemicals: study

Researchers tested more than 230 commonly used cosmetics and found that 56% of foundations and eye products, 48% of lip products and 47% of mascaras contained high levels of fluorine

White Rock’s Marine Drive has been converted to one-way traffic to allow more patio space for waterfront restaurants. (Peace Arch News)
Province promotes permanent pub patios in B.C. post-pandemic plan

More than 2,000 temporary expansions from COVID-19 rules

Lake City Secondary School Williams Lake campus students Ethan Reid, from left, Brenden Higgins, Ty Oviatt, Kaleb Alphonse, Nathan Kendrick and Landon Brink with RCMP officers Const. Nicoll and Const. Stancec. (Photo submitted)
RCMP thank 6 teens for helping prevent forest fire in Williams Lake

The students came across fire in a wooded area and used the water they had to try and extinguish the flames

There is an emergency shelter near the Golden Ears peaks. (Facebook/Special to The News)
Hiker fogged in on Golden Ears, spends 2 nights

Talon Helicopters, Ridge Meadows Search and Rescue bring him home Monday

Annamie Paul, leader of the Green Party of Canada, speaks at a news conference on Parliament Hill in Ottawa, on June 10, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Justin Tang
Green Leader Annamie Paul facing no-confidence motion from party brass

move follows months of internal strife and the defection of MP Jenica Atwin to the Liberals

Tulips bloom in front of the Supreme Court of Canada in Ottawa, Thursday, May 10, 2018. Day two of a full week of scheduled hearings will be heard in Federal Court today on a case involving Indigenous children unnecessarily taken into foster care by what all parties call Canada’s “broken child welfare system.” THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick
AFN slams Ottawa for ‘heartless’ legal challenge of First Nations child compensation

2019 decision awarded $40,000 to each Indigenous child removed before 2006

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

A 34-year-old man was arrested Monday after Transit Police found him riding a SkyTrain with a shotgun in the front of his sweatpants. (Transit Police)
SkyTrain passenger arrested, charged for concealing shotgun in his sweatpants

Codty-James Gray, 34, was found with ammunition, brass knuckles and knives

Most Read