Suspended police chief launches petition, seeks resignation
CTV Vancouver Island
Published Tuesday, February 28, 2017 10:48AM PST
Last Updated Tuesday, February 28, 2017 7:03PM PST
Victoria’s suspended police chief has launched a court action to try and sink the investigations into his alleged misconduct.
Frank Elsner has filed a petition with the B.C. Supreme Court to have the external investigations by the office of the Police Complaints Commission stayed.
In court documents Elsner says he wants to resign, but can’t until the matter is resolved.
“If we’re faced with that situation where suddenly he’s no longer chief of police in Victoria then the commissioner will have to have a look at it and decide whether there’s any need to pursue it any further,” deputy police complaint commissioner Rollie Woods said.
Elsner has been the subject of three separate investigations, the first was triggered by inappropriate sexually charged direct Twitter messages to a subordinate’s wife.
The investigation was launched more than a year ago and taxpayers continue to be on the hook for legal fees, expenses that could surpass the million dollar mark when it’s all over.
“The board has done a cost benefit analysis, we’re looking at this very carefully,” Victoria Mayor Lisa Helps said. “We’re open to an unconditional offer from the chief to resign if he wishes to make one.”
In his recent petition Elsner claims the situation has dragged on for an unreasonably long time and it’s taking a toll on his health.
After four extensions the investigation wrapped up last week, but the process may be far from over.
There are two outstanding court petitions and the investigation’s findings need to be reviewed.
“This is one of the larger debacles we’ve seen in recent history here in British Columbia under police accountability and transparency,” former solicitor general Kash Heed said.
With files from CTV Vancouver Island's Robert Buffam