The Independent Investigations Office of BC were on scene in the parking lot by Vedder River at the end of Lickman Road Tuesday, Jan. 12, 2021 after a man was shot by police early that morning. (Submitted/ Shane MacKichan)

The Independent Investigations Office of BC were on scene in the parking lot by Vedder River at the end of Lickman Road Tuesday, Jan. 12, 2021 after a man was shot by police early that morning. (Submitted/ Shane MacKichan)

Chilliwack RCMP officer faces criminal charges after domestic abuse suspect shot in 2021

Const. Keven Biagoni charged with discharging firearm with intent during arrest of David Bardwell

A Chilliwack RCMP officer who allegedly shot a man almost two years ago after an alleged domestic dispute is facing three criminal charges in connection with the incident.

Const. Keven Biagioni is charged with discharging a firearm with intent, aggravated assault, and careless use of a firearm in connection with the arrest of the suspect, David Bardwell, on Jan. 12, 2021.

The incident happened shortly after 7 a.m. that day when Chilliwack RCMP responded to a complaint of a man threatening and injuring a woman inside a home in the Sardis area.

The woman escaped and the man also left the property but continued to send “concerning messages and threats,” according to an RCMP press release.

Police searched the area for the suspect leading to Unsworth Elementary School nearby being put into a hold-and-secure.

An hour and a half later, RCMP say an officer located the suspect sitting in his vehicle in the Lickman Road parking lot on the Vedder River. When backup arrived, officers boxed the man’s vehicle in and approached him.

Chilliwack RCMP at the scene of a police incident after 9 a.m. on Tuesday, Jan. 12, 2021. (Jenna Hauck/ Chilliwack Progress)

“Police advise that the suspect reportedly had a weapon and during the course of the interaction the man was shot,” an RCMP release stated.

The province’s police watchdog, the Independent Investigations Office (IIO) of B.C., which investigates all officer-related incidents that result in serious harm or death, quickly took over the file.

In a press release issued by the IIO a few hours after the RCMP one, the incident was described slightly differently.

“At about 8:55 a.m., officers approached the vehicle, reportedly found the man in possession of a weapon and he was shot by police.”

The man was transported to hospital with serious injuries.

In June of this year, the IIO forwarded a report to the B.C. Prosecution Service (BCPS) recommending charges.

READ MORE: Police watchdog recommends charges against Chilliwack RCMP officer who shot suspect

The man shot was 41-year-old David Bardwell who is facing charges of assault by choking, assault causing bodily harm, and two counts of uttering threats to cause death or bodily harm in connection with the Jan. 12 incident involving his wife.

He was released from custody and is also facing at least nine criminal charges of breaching his release order. On June 8, 2022, Bardwell pleaded guilty to assault causing bodily harm and three of the breaches.

He was again released from custody pending sentencing, and was scheduled to appear in court on Wednesday (Nov. 2.) but he did not show up. A warrant was issued for his arrest.

The entire incident was also connected to the closure of his wife’s day care, Chilliwack Child Growth Society in Vedder Crossing.

“I have unfortunately come to a point where the personal and professional damage caused by my ex-husband could possibly have reached the unrepairable point,” she wrote in explanation for the closure.

The charge approved against Biagioni was done so by an experienced Crown Counsel with no prior or current connection with the officer, according to the BCPS in a statement on Nov. 3, the day the charges were sworn.

Biagioni’s first court appearance to the face the charges is scheduled for Dec. 12.

RELATED: IIO called in after ‘dynamic arrest’ downtown Chilliwack

RELATED: IIO called to Chilliwack after man goes into medical distress in RCMP cells


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