Blue Line

Latest officer death heartbreaking, but expert says recent police deaths not a trend

December 28, 2022  By The Canadian Press

Dec. 28, 2022, Ottawa, Ont. – The death of Ontario Provincial Police Const. Grzegorz Pierzchala Tuesday marks the sixth police death in Canada since September, but an expert is warning the numbers do not represent a trend.

Michael Arntfield, a criminologist and professor at Western University, says the recent deaths are concerning and an indication of how dangerous policing has become, given the growing responsibilities of officers.

But Arntfield, a former officer himself, says police deaths are still rare and the string of tragedies does not represent a growing trend.

Pierzchala was shot while responding to a vehicle in a ditch just west of Hagersville, Ont., about 45 kilometres southwest of Hamilton.


The head of the Police Association of Ontario says it’s “heartbreaking,” and says members are waiting to learn more about the suspects involved.

Four other police officers have been killed while on duty since the fall, along with one off-duty officer.

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