Brick strikes officer from 16 storeys near Dundas Square

Still covered with shards of glass, Const. Byun went to convenience store and bought five lottery tickets

Scout car takes a brick (Photo: TPS)

Scout car takes a brick
(Photo: TPS)

Const. David Byun was about to turn on his lights to pull over a vehicle at Dundas Square when a brick fell 16 storeys, shattering his windshield and striking him in the lower chest and stomach – under the protection of his kevlar vest.

“My front windshield just exploded,” said the 52 Division officer, out on routine patrol. “I then felt the thump in my chest.” Byun looked down in disbelief to find an intact brick lying in his lap. “The whole interior was covered with glass.” He got out of the marked scout car immediately and looked up to surrounding buildings.
“I looked up to the buildings to see if anyone was peeking their head out of a building,” said Byun, who first thought it could have come from an open window in a neighbouring building. A construction worker then approached him to check if he was okay. Byun asked if anyone was working on the building and to bring them down to ground level. Two bricklayers soon arrived; one was thankful Byun was okay. They had been working on a platform, between two buildings, when one dropped a brick, bouncing off the 10-storey building below and onto the scout car.
Dundas Square

Dundas Square

“The vest definitely made the injury less severe,” said Byun, noting his glasses case in his vest pocket was crushed. Several units arrived and took over the investigation. Ministry of Labour investigators shut down the site for an investigation.

Byun’s unit commander, Supt. Hugh Ferguson, said the vest may have saved him from serious injury, or even death. “The whole idea behind the vest is that it spreads the impact over a greater area,” Ferguson said. “It’s a valuable piece of safety equipment that has proven effective in more than just shooting incidents, but it has also saved officers’ lives in traffic collisions … Had it not been for that vest, he could have been killed,”