VPD officers disciplined for misconduct during 2016 wellness check that turned into a brawl
Published Friday, June 11, 2021 6:44PM PDT Last Updated Friday, June 11, 2021 7:56PM PDT
VANCOUVER -- Two Vancouver police officers have been disciplined for abuse of authority and using unnecessary force during a wellness check in East Vancouver in 2016 that turned into an all-out brawl.
Earlier this year, retired judge Carol Baird Ellan found misconduct allegations against Vancouver Police Department constables Eric Ludeman and Neil Logan to be substantiated.
Ellan was serving as the adjudicator in a complaint brought against the two constables before B.C.'s Office of the Police Complaints Commissioner. On Friday, she announced her decision on punishment for the two officers.
Ludeman will receive a reduction of one rank, while Logan will be suspended for eight days, according to Ellan's decision.
The two men will also be required to receive training or retraining on use of force, crisis intervention and de-escalation, and they cannot be promoted or serve as acting sergeants for at least one year.
The complaint against the two officers stems from the altercation that ensued after they were called to the home of Vladimir and Natalia Tchaikoun in March 2016. A neighbour had called 911 to request a check on Natalia's well-being.
OPCC records of the case indicate that what began as a door knock, with Vladimir responding, escalated into both officers entering the home and, eventually, into a physical fight with members of the Tchaikoun family in and around a bathroom.
Records show Vladimir suffered significant injuries, including a probable concussion, damaged teeth, severe bruising of the entire body including face, head, arms, legs, chest, back and abdomen, and also multiple lacerations on his head, face, lips, nose.
“(The officers') approach at the time was more consistent with an assault investigation than a well-being check,” Ellan said in her February decision that the complaint was substantiated.
The decision in the public hearing came after a separate review under the Police Act found in 2019 that the allegations of misconduct against both officers were not substantiated.
As a result of the brawl, several members of the Tchaikoun family were arrested and charged with assaulting an officer. Those charges were later stayed.
With files from CTV News Vancouver's David Molko