RCMP responds to 2nd complaint against Mountie
Published Friday, January 21, 2011 7:13PM PST
British Columbia Mounties confirm the force is conducting an internal investigation against a member facing a second allegation of using unnecessary violence on the job.
Abbotsford police recommended criminal action against Kelowna RCMP Const. Geoff Mantler this week after reviewing video of the officer kicking 51-year-old Buddy Tavares repeatedly in the face while taking him into custody outside a local golf course.
Tavares was later charged with the careless use of a firearm.
The RCMP said Friday Mantler is also being investigated for an August 2010 arrest where the victim suffered a broken tooth, black eye and multiple facial lacerations.
Jeremy Packer, who works for a boat company, was mistakenly arrested by Mantler and another officer when he was repossessing a vessel for non-payment issues, in Kelowna last summer.
"All of a sudden these two cops come running up with their guns drawn and they're looking at me and screaming ‘put your hands up,'" he told CTV News.
Packer said police pulled him out of the car while it was still in gear, which caused it to subsequently roll ahead and hit another vehicle.
Packer said he was punched repeatedly despite being cooperative. He was taken into custody for several hours but never charged with a crime.
"They were holding me down, I was handcuffed and they were giving me shots to the back of the head."
Packer filed a formal complaint with the RCMP in November. As of Jan. 14, the RCMP Professional Standards Unit was still reviewing the file.
Mantler has been suspended with pay pending the outcome of the investigation in relation to the Buddy Tavares videotaped incident, which went viral online and was seen by thousands of people.
An RCMP spokesperson told CTV News the force is conscious of the negative impact the video has had in the public's eye.
"The video of Mr. Tavares is, we've said it, it's shocking," Cpl. Annie Linteau said. "It's been shocking to the public, it's been shocking to us. There has been a public outrage that we're certainly well aware of. Is it concerning, absolutely."
With a report from CTV British Columbia's Kent Molgat