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No charges for Hamilton officer after 2 teens fall to their deaths

The province’s Special Investigations Unit (SIU) will not be charging a Hamilton police officer after two teenagers fell or jumped to their deaths earlier this week.

Alex McCormack and Irn Turner Mace, both 17, were found dead early Saturday.

“On the basis of this investigation, there is simply no credible information that the subject officer was in any way responsible for the deaths,” SIU director Ian Scott said in a statement.

“On the contrary, in his off-duty capacity, he was attempting to avert what he very reasonably perceived to be a potential accident or misadventure.  Unfortunately, the young men appeared to have a prearranged plan to commit suicide, a plan they tragically fulfilled shortly after the subject officer left the area,”  Scott said.

The SIU said the officer saw the two teens standing on the Arkledun Avenue overpass, which overlooks a large gorge referred to as the Jolley Cut, around 5:30 a.m.

The officer told the police dispatcher what he saw and continued his patrol. He drove by the overpass on his way home and noticed the young men were now both straddling the railing with their hands behind their backs.

According to the SIU, the officer stopped, and both teens quickly climbed down from the railing and apologized to him.  

The officer warned them their behaviour was unsafe and the teens apologized again. They walked away as the officer watched.

The officer then went home.

McCormack and Mace were found dead in the gorge at 6:20 a.m. A passerby noticed their bodies and called police.

The teens attended Saltfleet District High School. There have now been four deaths involving students from Saltfleet this school year, Hamilton-Wentworth District School Board Supt. Manny Figueiredo told CityNews earlier this week.

A female student committed suicide and another female student died of her medical conditions, he said.