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Man shot by Winnipeg police after allegedly trying to set fire to parked vehicle

A man is in hospital after being shot by Winnipeg police following an incident where police say he was trying to set a vehicle on fire.

Police got a 911 call around 5:20 p.m. Tuesday from someone saying they saw the man using a lighter to try to set fire to the caller’s vehicle’s fuel tank on Arlington Street near Notre Dame Avenue, Winnipeg Police Service spokesperson Const. Dani McKinnon said during a Wednesday news conference.

While no fire was set, the man then armed himself with a knife and a rock and started running into traffic, McKinnon said. He was confronting people and yelling when officers arrived a few minutes later, McKinnon said.

She said officers unsuccessfully tried using a stun gun on the man before shooting him.

The man was taken to hospital in unstable condition and has since been upgraded to stable, McKinnon said.

She couldn’t say whether any charges would be laid against the man shot by police.

“There’s just too much to consider right now to even speculate on that,” she said.

McKinnon also couldn’t say why the stun gun didn’t work in this case, but said that can happen for several reasons.

“During a use-of-force encounter, if one method is deemed ineffective or inappropriate … you must consider another option for use of force. So I will not speculate for this,” McKinnon said, adding that information will form part of an investigation now underway by Manitoba’s police watchdog.

The Independent Investigation Unit of Manitoba (IIU), which probes all serious incidents involving on- or off-duty officers in the province, has assumed responsibility for the investigation, McKinnon said. 

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