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Man injured in violent Sask. arrest to be removed from life support


A man injured in an incident involving Prince Albert police will soon be taken off life support, according to his family.

Boden Umpherville, 40, has been in hospital since April 1 after he was Tasered and pepper sprayed during an arrest where police also used collapsible batons.

Umpherville's family says he is now considered brain-dead.

"I just hope this will never happen to any mother, what I have to go through," Umpherville's mother Verna said while speaking at a Federation of Sovereign Indigenous Nations (FSIN) news conference held in Saskatoon on Friday.

According to the FSIN, doctors told his family that Umpherville's current state "was accelerated due to a 20-minute period where his heart stopped beating before being revived."

Verna said she believes the life-saving measures taken by police prior to the arrival of paramedics were insufficient.

Umpherville's arrest is currently under investigation by the province's Serious Incident Response Team (SIRT). It is the new police oversight body's second investigation.

The violent arrest occurred after police spotted a black Dodge Avenger that had been reported stolen by its owner, according to a Prince Albert Police Service (PAPS) news release.

When it was stopped a little before 2:30 a.m., Umpherville was found driving the car with two passengers inside, one of whom was the registered owner, according to police. However, the FSIN says the owner claims she never reported the car stolen.

According to an April 4 Ministry of Justice news release, a loaded handgun was later found at the scene by SIRT investigators.

A bystander video submitted to CTV News shows the arrest. Six officers can be seen surrounding the vehicle.

The sound of tasers can be heard and police can be seen using collapsible batons, at one point the car speeds forward briefly before coming to a stop.

The full video can be viewed using the player above.

The FSIN says it is in possession of three videos showing the incident.

"My brother never deserved any of this. No human being deserves what my brother went through," his brother Darry said during Friday morning's news conference.

"(I'm) just disgusted with the police force for what they did to my brother," Darry said.

"They Tased him and they beat him."

In a statement to CTV News, a spokesperson said PAPS is unable to answer questions regarding the incident while the SIRT investigation is still ongoing.

"All officers involved remain assigned to regular duties with our police service while the matter is investigated by the Serious Incident Response Team," the statement said.

"Members were given time to participate in the ongoing SIRT investigation and to access both our peer-led re-integration program and in-house wellness strategy. These programs are available to all members based on their individual needs as they return to regular duty."

Boden's family expressed frustration that the officers involved in the incident are back on the job.

"I don't understand, why are they still working," Verna said.

"I don't understand why their badges weren't taken from them they should not be working right now," she said.

"Last year, the FSIN officially expressed our concerns with the Prince Albert police service," FSIN vice chief Dutch Lerat said.

"Within these videos, one can observe a gang-like mentality displayed by the officers swarming Mr. Umpherville. Clearly not afraid for their safety as was suggested," Lerat said.

The only other SIRT investigation currently underway, also involves Prince Albert police. It is examining a deadly encounter which occured in January. 

The police service also came under scrutiny last year following the death of a 13-month-old child, that the FSIN and others believe could have been prevented by police.

Last fall, the Saskatchewan government has appointed a former Edmonton police chief to conduct an outside review of the the police service. Top Stories

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