A man involved in a deadly altercation at the Yellowknife Day Shelter in July will not be charged as it has been determined that he was acting in self-defence at the time.

The July 26 incident resulted in a 32-year-old man being taken to Stanton Territorial Hospital in an unconscious state. He was later medevaced to an Edmonton hospital, where he was eventually taken off life support and he succumbed to his injuries.

The RCMP’s Major Crimes Unit conducted an investigation, which included reviewing a video recording of the altercation.

“The video showed that the deceased man was the aggressor in the incident. The male who caused the fatal injuries was arrested, interviewed and released by investigators without charges being laid,” the RCMP stated in a Wednesday morning news release.

The results of the investigation were forwarded to the Public Prosecution Service of Canada for review.

That assessment was recently concluded and it determined that the suspect was acting in self-defence and “his actions were reasonable and proportionate to the force being used against him.”

As such, the RCMP investigation has been concluded without charges.

“Police investigate to discover the facts of an incident, and then assess whether the facts merit criminal charges being laid,” stated Sgt. Jason Hurley of the NT RCMP’s Major Crimes Unit. “In a serious and tragic incident such as this, we often get an opinion from the Public Prosecution Service of Canada to determine if the legal threshold has been met for charges. In this case, the threshold was not met, as the suspect had a legitimate fear for his own well-being and acted proportionately to protect himself from that imminent threat to his safety.”

Derek Neary

Derek Neary has been reporting on developments in the North for 18 years. When he's not writing for Nunavut News, he's working on Northern News Services' special publications such as Opportunities North,...

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