Victoria cop reprimanded for using lights, sirens to get children to school
Victoria Police Department headquarters on April 12, 2019. (CTV Vancouver Island)
Published Tuesday, October 22, 2019 5:02PM PDT
Last Updated Tuesday, October 22, 2019 6:27PM PDT
VICTORIA -- A Victoria police officer was reprimanded for belting her two young children together in the front seat of a police van, and throwing on the emergency lights and sirens to get them to school — all while neglecting an active investigation.
That was just one of 79 misconduct investigations that B.C.'s Office of the Police Complaint Commissioner (OPCC) launched against municipal officers last year.
Those 79 "substantiated allegations" represent a 65 per cent spike in investigations from the year prior, ranging in seriousness from sexual harassment to going "Code 3" to get the kids to school on time.
A full report into the 2018 investigations, released Tuesday, details each of the 79 cases that were ordered investigated from a total of 1,326 misconduct allegations between April 2018 and March 2019.
Many of those allegations involved injuries resulting from police actions, including dog bites and use of physical force.
Three police officers were dismissed as a result of the findings — including former Victoria police chief Frank Elsner — while nearly all others were given suspensions, training, reprimands or "advice to future conduct."
The latter two — advice and a reprimand for neglect of duty — were meted out to the Victoria officer whose actions of Sept. 4, 2018 are described above.
The officer was also given a violation ticket for improperly securing her two children with a single seatbelt.
"The officer’s actions in activating the police vehicle emergency lights and siren caused several motorists to pull over to the side of the road," according to the OPCC report.
However, the officer was already "in the process of retiring and therefore there was little likelihood of this behaviour being repeated," the report concluded.