An unnamed RCMP constable with only 18 months on the job tazered an 11-year-old boy outside of Prince George. Reports say there were three RCMP members on the scene at the time.
Are three trained adults really so terrified of a single 11-year-old that they have to resort to tazering a child? If they are, we really need to question what sort of training recruits are actually getting at the Regina RCMP Depot.
The RCMP will not, of course, name the constable involved, and will only say the individual has been placed on administrative leave.... RCMP jargon for paid vacation.
It defies all logic and common sense that three trained constables should be that terrified that they need to tazer a child. And I'm not alone in feeling this way. There are no less than four independent investigations being conducted into this event.
- The RCMP is doing its own internal investigation.
- The West Vancouver Police are conducting an investigation and are the lead investigators, according to Prince George RCMP Supt. Brenda Butterworth-Carr.
- The RCMP Public Complaints Commission has launched its own complaint into the conduct of RCMP constables involved.
- B.C.'s Representative for Children and Youth, Mary Ellen Turpel-Lafond, is launching her own investigation into the case.
The West Vancouver Police are hyper-aware of how little faith we the people have in police investigating police. They claim, and at this point there is no reason to doubt their claim, that they will be as impartial and professional in this case as they are in every other case.
The West Vancouver police "operate with the knowledge that there is a public concern with the perception of police investigating police. [West Vancouver Police] Chief Lepine is confident that the officers assigned to the investigation will ensure that, as with all West Vancouver Police investigations, the highest levels of integrity and policing standards will be applied," West Vancouver Police Cpl. Fred Harding said.
Let's hope that is true, and that there are answers to some very troubling questions sooner rather than later, because with every passing day the apparent poor decision-making processes of RCMP constables does only one thing:
It destroys the confidence we mere citizens have in our once-proud national police force.
I can't speak for anyone but myself, but I believe we've lost more than enough confidence in the RCMP, and it's long past time they started acting worthy of our respect.