St. Catherines, Ontario – Prosecutors have dropped charges against a Niagara police officer who shot a fellow officer multiple times during a crash investigation in 2018.
Niagara Regional Police (NRP) Constable Nathan Parker, 52, and NPR Detective Sergeant Shane Donovan, 57, were investigating a motor vehicle collision near the intersection of Roland Road and Effingham Street in Pelham when the altercation occurred on Nov. 29, 2018, according to The Star.
Details regarding what led up to the violent confrontation have not been released.
During the brawl, Sgt. Donovan fired multiple rounds at Const. Parker, striking him at least five times in his upper leg, shoulder, and the end of his nose, police said.
The constable’s ballistic vest deflected or stopped many additional rounds, The Star reported.
Sgt. Donovan, a 20-year veteran-of-the-force, was charged with assault with a weapon, aggravated assault, and attempted murder in March.
But in May, the Ontario Provincial Police (OPP) also charged Const. Parker with assault with a weapon, assault with intent to resist arrest, and assaulting a police officer, The Star reported.
According to Sgt. Donovan’s attorney, Joanne Mulcahy, the sergeant shot the constable in self-defense.
“[Sgt. Donavan] believed his actions were fully necessary, fully justified in defense of his life,” Mulachy told The Star.
On Nov. 22, Crown attorney Ian Bulmer asked an Ontario Court of Justice judge to dismiss the charges against Sgt. Donovan.
Bulmer told the court that there was no reasonable prospect that Sgt. Donovan would be convicted of the charges against him.
The judge dismissed the case against Sgt. Donovan the same day, The Star reported.
Const. Parker’s attorney, Joseph Markson, blasted the ruling.
“No theory of the case justifies Donovan’s discharging of his firearm multiple times into my client’s body,” Markson told The Star. “My client, who is still recovering from nine bullet wounds, is shocked and shaken.”
The criminal case against Cont. Parker remains ongoing, according to The Star.
Although the charges against Sgt. Donovan have been dismissed, he still remains on paid administrative leave, The Star reported.
Const. Parker has also been suspended with pay.
“At this time, we must respect the judicial process and allow this matter to continue to unfold before the courts,” NRP Chief Bryan MacCulloch told The Star.