|Staff Sgt. Brian Cumming of Squamish RCMP said their officer was responding|
to a complaint about a child playing in the street, not about
the four-year-old's nudity. (CBC)
Naked 4-year-old son prompts police visit
Ian McIlwaine said he was "shaken and very upset" after an officer visited his home April 22 following a complaint from a neighbour about his four-year-old son, Tyler, playing naked in the yard three days earlier.
The story sparked outrage online, with people questioning the police and the neighbour's actions. In a statement, police confirmed the complaint was "about their son being out on the street with no clothes on a few days earlier."
On Wednesday however, Squamish RCMP met with the McIlwaines, apologized for how the matter was handled and said there was a misunderstanding about the complaint.
'The issue is child safety'
|Ian McIlwaine with his two sons, Tyler (left) and Connor.|
McIlwaine's family received a visit from the RCMP after a neighbour complained
four-year-old Tyler was playing naked outside. (Ian McIlwaine/Facebook)
"There was mention that the children had been naked in the street, but that really wasn't the concern. The concern was with child safety in general," said Cumming.
"The nakedness issue is just not the issue at all. The issue is child safety."
The officer was satisfied McIlwaine's two sons were in no danger and closed the file on the day of his visit, said Cumming.
"For reasons I can't fully explain, it became of interest on social media," he said.
Let me explain: The McIlwains thought the incident was about the boy's nakedness. How they came through a meeting of more than half an hour still thinking that is a very good question, and probably one that you and the investigating officer should get to the bottom of.
Family accepts police apology
Following the one-hour meeting with RCMP, McIlwaine said he and his wife accept the police apology.
"We feel completely resolved," he told CBC News.
However, as for the explanation that the complaint was originally about "child safety," McIlwaine said he didn't see his boys playing in the street.
It's not clear why the neighbour, who has not been identified, waited three days to complain to police if the concern was indeed about safety.
McIlwaine said he wishes the neighbour had just spoken to him directly, rather than involving police.
The RCMP don't argue with that notion.
"I can't control that. Would it be a better way to do things? Probably, but people are free to do what they choose to do," said Cumming.