New Brunswick Police Commission reviewing how it conducts investigations in wake of handling of Oland murder
|Toronto Star 29 Dec 2018 at 15:14|
FREDERICTONâThe New Brunswick Police Commission says itâs reviewing how it conducts investigations, a day after facing criticism about its handling of a probe into a senior officerâs conduct following millionaire businessman Richard Olandâs murder.
Lynn Chaplin, acting chairwoman of the provincial police commission, says in a statement Friday that the review is part of a âstrategic planning processâ launched earlier this month.
She says the process will carry on in the new year, and also includes a review of the commissionâs investigatorsâ manual and operational procedures.
Chaplin says the review will ensure the commission fulfills its role of âsafeguarding the public interest in policing in New Brunswick.â
Her comments come after the New Brunswick Police Association accused the police oversight body of being âout of control,â and alleged the commission is being run in an âabusive, authoritarian fashion.â
Bob Davidson, executive director of the New Brunswick Police Association, said the case of Glen McCloskey â a former deputy chief of the Saint John Police Force who came under scrutiny during the first murder trial of Dennis Oland â is an example of the commission âcompletely ignoring legislative rights.â
Officer had to order other cops away from Oland crime scene, trial hears
âThe McCloskey case points outs violations under both the Police Act and the Privacy Act,â Davidson, whose association represents municipal police officers, said Thursday. âThere has been a continued abuse of process and ignoring legislation.â
In 2015, a witness alleged McCloskey asked him to change his testimony not to reveal the high-ranking officer had been at the crime scene.
McCloskey denied the allegation when he took the stand, but said he had entered the crime scene because he was curious.
The police commission agreed it would investigate his conduct once Olandâs trial had concluded.
Although McCloskey retired before a hearing by the provincial police commission was held â the commission only investigates officers on active duty â it still gathered information on the matter.
Davidson alleged the police commission violated McCloskeyâs privacy by giving its entire file on McCloskey to lawyers involved in the second Oland trial, prompting a complaint to the provinceâs Office of the Integrity Commissioner.
He said a decision earlier this month found the police commission did not have authority to disclose the information to Crown prosecutors or the defence team, and had breached McCloskeyâs privacy in two instances by disclosing his personal information.