By The Canadian Press - Thursday, February 14, 2013 - 0 Comments
DUNCAN, B.C. – An RCMP officer has been found guilty of aggravated assault for…
DUNCAN, B.C. – An RCMP officer has been found guilty of aggravated assault for shooting a man in the shoulder during a traffic stop on Vancouver Island.
Const. David Pompeo had testified that William Gillespie emerged from his vehicle in a zombie-like state on Sept. 18, 2000.
Pompeo said he wasn’t sure if the man was high on drugs, planning to attack or thinking nothing at all before he shot him.
The trial heard last summer that Pompeo and his partner were driving an unmarked pickup truck when they pulled Gillespie over for suspicion of driving while prohibited.
Gillespie praised the judge’s ruling on Thursday.
“I’m very pleased that the judge did not believe Const. Pompeo’s version of the events of Sept. 18, 2009, and that his life was never in any real danger behind his steel door and his bullet-proof vest on,” he said outside court.
“Now I don’t think there will be a shoot-first policy. People across Canada should be pleased that the courts are not going to look the other way on police use of excessive force and trigger-happy police officers.”
RCMP officials who were at provincial court in Duncan, B.C., for the decision said they will be reviewing Judge Josiah Wood’s ruling before making any comment.
The court heard that after seeing the lights of Pompeo’s ghost car, Gillespie pulled his sedan into a friend’s Chemainus, B.C., driveway and stopped with a skid.
Pompeo told court during the trial that Gillespie got out of his vehicle without being told to do so and made blatant movements and gestures, making him believe the man was armed.
The officer testified Gillespie ignored his commands at gunpoint, but Gillespie said he was ordered out of the car and complied fully with Pompeo’s instructions.
“He was blatantly ignoring my commands to comply while he was advancing at gunpoint,” Pompeo told the trial. “I was under the impression that he was retrieving the means with which to cause me bodily harm, or worse.” (CJSU)
By macleans.ca - Tuesday, February 8, 2011 at 1:02 PM - 15 Comments
Raf Souccar says next commissioner should be a police officer
Raf Souccar, the RCMP deputy commissioner who complained to federal authorities about Commissioner William Elliott, testified today to a standing committee on public safety about his boss’s abusive behaviour. Elliott, the RCMP’s first civilian appointed to commissioner, announced last Friday that he would step down at the end of this summer, after numerous complaints about his management style and treatment of officers. Among the deputy commissioner’s grievances was Elliott’s tendency to criticize officers publicly, while Souccar tried to deal with internal issues privately. Souccar said there was little doubt that the next RCMP commissioner should be a police officer, not a civilian, and “will have to be a strong leader who can rally the troops, someone everyone can believe in and support.” He also called for changes to the RCMP Act that would allow a swifter discipline process.
By macleans.ca - Friday, February 4, 2011 at 4:30 PM - 3 Comments
William Elliot faced heavy criticism from top brass
William Elliot, the beleaguered RCMP commissioner who became the first civilian chief of the force in 2007, announced on Friday that he will step down next July. Complaints began to surface in July of last year from RCMP officers who said that Elliot was abrasive, bullying and difficult to work with. Former CSIS director Reid Morden was later hired for $28,000 to produce a “workplace assessment” of the force. Many of Elliot’s critics were replaced, such as Deputy Commissioner Raf Souccar. CTV News’ Don Martin expressed surprise at Elliot’s resignation, saying “he seemed to have won,” while noting that Elliot himself had previously stated that “the mood of the senior leadership of the RCMP is very positive.” Liberal public safety critic Mark Holland says that with Elliot’s resignation, it is an opportune time to reform the RCMP.
By Michael Friscolanti - Thursday, March 4, 2010 at 1:00 PM - 7 Comments
Police are hampered by holes in the sex-offender legislation
One of the problems plaguing Canada’s national sex offender registry is that the database has no idea if an offender is following the rules. Everyone on the list—almost 22,000 names—is supposed to check in with police once a year, if they move, or take a long vacation. But for reasons that defy logic, the legislation that created the registry doesn’t actually allow the RCMP to record an offender’s next reporting date. To compensate, officers across the country have been forced to invent completely separate tracking systems. Some provinces use Excel spreadsheets to monitor rapists and pedophiles. Others rely on an old-fashioned Rolodex.
Those index cards seemed destined for the garbage bin in June, when the Conservatives introduced Bill C-34, a law that would finally grant police the power to input crucial tracking information directly onto the registry. Unfortunately, when Parliament prorogued in December, the bill died with it. Which means—yet again—repairs to the registry will have to wait.
In the meantime, though, the RCMP can celebrate one thing: despite those Rolodexes, compliance rates have actually improved. According to the latest numbers, 95 per cent of registered sex offenders are doing what they’re told, up from 92 per cent in 2007. Three years ago, when the system contained close to 16,000 entries, 1,270 were non-compliant. Today, as the total climbs above 22,000, only 979 are unaccounted for.
By Aaron Wherry - Tuesday, February 23, 2010 at 2:45 PM - 40 Comments
The RCMP report tabled yesterday by Colin Kenny and a delegation of Liberal senators is here. A few of its notable recommendations are as follows.
We recommend that the federal government move quickly to establish a civilian review authority to deal openly with serious grievances concerning the conduct of the RCMP; that this body possess full audit authority, power to subpoena, and have full access to RCMP records except for Cabinet confidences; and that it also have the power to initiate legal proceedings and recommend redress in cases in which it concludes that RCMP officers have broken the law…
RCMP marked vehicles and uniformed officers should be equipped with miniature cameras that would enhance transparency for both officers and citizens from false accusations of improper behaviour…
We recommend that the federal government provide funding to increase RCMP personnel by 5,000 (or more) regular members in approximately equal increments over the next decade…
Senator Kenny told the Sun the government could pay for various improvements with an increase to the GST.
By Nancy Macdonald - Monday, December 15, 2008 at 9:00 AM - 3 Comments
After the obituary, the Mounties called off the chase
A Halifax man, alleged to have faked his own death to escape charges of sexually assaulting a young girl, has turned up very much alive in a B.C. provincial courthouse.
In March, Jeremy Daniel Oakley, 37, will finally stand trial for sexual assault and sexual interference with a person under 16. He was arrested near Peggy’s Cove, N.S., this summer as the result of an unrelated child pornography investigation. It wasn’t until he was fingerprinted that police realized he was a previously wanted suspect who had been presumed dead. His case is raising troubling questions about how RCMP officers were duped—not by a death certificate or hard evidence confirming Oakley’s death—but by an obituary that ran in a Halifax newspaper.