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'A gross overreach': Coquitlam, B.C., man explains why he's suing RCMP who surprised him naked in his home

Coquitlam, B.C. -

A Coquitlam, B.C., man had just stepped out of the shower and opened the door to his ensuite bathroom while naked when he was startled to find a Mountie standing in the bedroom.

"When I open the bathroom door, bang, right there, I'm face to face with an intruder in my house,” said Kirk Forbes. "A little bit of panic set in. Fortunately, I did see the uniform."

He said the strange encounter happened in June of last year.

According to Forbes, the officer and her partner were there to serve him with a traffic ticket for allegedly passing a stopped school bus in Pemberton seven months earlier.

He said the officers told him that when they knocked on the front door it swung open – but he doesn’t think that gives them the right to enter his home.

“There’s such a gross overreach – an abuse of power – that I believe happened with them coming into my home,” Forbes said. “And I think Canadians need to be aware that this has happened and it is happening. It’s an erosion of not just my rights but everybody’s rights.”

Forbes said he later went to file a complaint at the RCMP’s Coquitlam detachment and he alleges the receptionist referred to him as "the shower guy," which leads him to believe he has become the butt of RCMP jokes.

“It was pretty concerning, not to mention embarrassing, to know that this situation has become water-jug banter at the RCMP hall,” he said. “If I get pulled over, or see some RCMP in the community, now do I have to look at them and have them know that I’m that guy?”

Forbes said he initially made what the RCMP told him would be an informal complaint.

He said an officer took a statement from him about what happened, but that nobody followed up, so he has now filed a formal complaint with the RCMP’s Civilian Review and Complaints Commission.

He has also filed a lawsuit against the two officers, the Attorney General of Canada and the B.C. minister of public safety.

The statement of claim seeks unspecified damages and alleges "that RCMP members Jane Doe and John Doe abused their authority and power when they entered the dwelling house without his consent."

"Two RCMP officers entered his home without authorization, consent, his knowledge or a judicially authorized search warrant,” said Sebastien Anderson, Forbes’ lawyer.

Coquitlam RCMP acknowledge police did go to Forbes’ house to serve him with the traffic ticket and said in a statement that they encountered what appeared to be an unsecured residence.

“Eventually, our officers were able to make contact with the resident, who raised concerns about their presence. We believed that we had dealt with those concerns informally, however, the resident initiated a formal public complaint which is currently underway,” the detachment said in a statement.

Forbes said he still gets anxious when he thinks about what happened.

“I feel like this is supposed to be my safe place and it’s not,” he said. "That has been violated.”

The RCMP have not yet filed a statement of defence in the lawsuit.

Forbes said he is disputing the ticket officers gave him that day and that legal process is also ongoing. Top Stories

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