Two of the three storekeepers accused of bundling a suspected shoplifter into a van and beating him on the weekend were involved in a similar incident in 2001, according to a Toronto police email.

The internal email mistakenly released to the media yesterday canvasses eight officers on whether to see if there is a need to hold a media scrum to alert shopkeepers of their “rights when acting on their powers of arrest.”

Saturday’s incident became “ugly” when the accused — a Grange Avenue store manager and two of his employees — allegedly restrained a sus­pected thief, bound his hands and ankles and threw him into a van, where he was beaten, the email states.

Officers responding to a 9-1-1 call freed the man.

“The owner and his manager (two of the accused) had a similar type incident back in 2001 where the end result was a peace bond,” the police email states.

A peace bond, usually ordered by a justice of the peace, is an undertaking to keep the peace and obey other specified terms of conditions and does not result in a criminal record.

When called for comment yesterday, police said they could not discuss the 2001 incident because no criminal records resulted.