The head of the commission for complaints against the RCMP has ruled that Constable Paul Koester acted in self-defence when he shot and killed Ian Bush.
"After carefully considering the circumstances, I concluded that Constable Koester had a reasonable apprehension of death and believed that he could not otherwise preserve himself from death other than to use lethal force. Accordingly, Constable Koester acted in self-defence."
Here's the nub of the problem. From Global News:
"Koester, who stands 6-4 and weighs 180 pounds, insisted the six-foot, 187-pound laborer was atop his back choking the life out of him when he managed to free his gun.
In a physical feat even RCMP investigators conceded was worthy of a contortionist, the Constable got the gun behind his own back, up to the back of Bush's head and shot him.
He refused to reenact what happened for investigators and the coroner's inquest that was held earlier this year. "
Koester "refused to re-enact" this amazing feat but you can try it for yourself. Lie on the ground. Have a friend stradle your back and place his hands around your throat. Then, face down, reach around behind your back and point your finger into the back of your friend's head. Don't worry about the extra distance that would be required to accomodate a gun, just try it with your finger. See if you can "re-enact" the shooting of Ian Bush. Then ask yourself why no one, including Koester, has been able to re-enact this self-defence shooting scenario. And then draw your own conclusions.
Paul Kennedy's punchline came in this astonishing finding: Kennedy said the RCMO conducted a highly professional investigation "free from any manner of conflict of interest, bias or partiality" into the slaying. Here's how the investigation into one of their own was conducted, you be the judge:
The force didn't interrogate the shooter, Koester, for three months after the killing. Investigators succumbed to the constable's demands that they submit questions in writing to him in advance. Koester was obviously treating the incident as a homicide, why weren't the investigators?
Free from any manner of conflict of interest? When the RCMP investigates one of its own there's an inherent appearance of conflict of interest. When you don't talk to the shooter for three months and then give him your questions in advance, that smacks of bias and partiality. Sorry Mr. Kennedy, you'll have to do better than that.