Manitoba’s police watchdog has recommended charges against an on-duty Brandon Police Service (BPS) officer accused of assault and theft.

According to the Independent Investigation Unit of Manitoba (IIU), the incident dates back to Sept. 23 when the officer is alleged to have grabbed a man and forced him onto the hood of a police car, and is said to have knocked a cell phone to the ground out of the hands of another male.

The IIU said the officer allegedly took the phone.

The unit launched an investigation soon after, with Civilian Director Roxanne Gagné ultimately finding Criminal Code charges should be laid against the officer.

As a result, BPS officer Const. Darwin Raga was charged with two counts of assault and one count of theft under $5,000.

He was released on Feb. 26 on a summons.

The IIU declined to comment further, as the matter is before the courts.

In an email to CTV News Winnipeg, BPS’ public information officer Sgt. Dana McCallum said Raga has been with the service for 20 years, and is currently reassigned to a non-operational role with the service.

“I am unable to comment on the investigation as the matter is before the courts,” Sgt. McCallum said.