Delta officer wins review after ticketing drivers for offences that didn't happen
The Canadian Press
Published Friday, July 13, 2018 1:16PM PDT
VANCOUVER - A Delta, B.C., police officer who ticketed drivers for offences that didn't happen has won a review of the suspension and demotion proposed by the province's police complaint commissioner.
Const. Byron Ritchie was seeking a public hearing after a misconduct hearing upheld 11 allegations of deceit committed under the Police Act, in 2016.
Ritchie was seconded that year to the Greater Vancouver Integrated Road Safety Unit when a driver complained she had been pulled over while on her cellphone, but had instead been ticketed for not having insurance and not wearing a seatbelt.
Documents from the complaint commission investigation show the driver had proper insurance papers and was wearing a seatbelt but Ritchie told her she was "getting a break" because the combined fines for the offences were less than a ticket for distracted driving.
An investigation ordered by the complaint commission uncovered 10 similar incidents, but after learning of his demotion and other penalties, Ritchie requested a public hearing, arguing findings of fact made by the commissioner weren't supported by the final investigation report.
Complaint commissioner Stan Lowe says a public hearing is not required to restore public confidence in the misconduct probe but retired provincial court judge James Threlfall has been appointed to review the record and make a final decision about any discipline.