Improper Saanich police arrest going to public hearing

OPCC will hold a public hearing into allegations of professional misconduct against a Saanich police officer

The Office of the Police Complaint Commissioner announced this week it will hold a public hearing into allegations of professional misconduct against a Saanich police officer.

Complaint commissioner Stan Lowe on Monday said the hearing will look into allegations of deceit and abuse of authority involving Const. David Smit following a May 2011 incident. Smit himself requested the hearing.

While attending a report of a domestic dispute on May 20, 2011, Smit directed a man out of his home in order to arrest him for intoxication in a public place.

“When questioned by his superiors about his actions, Constable Smit denied that he had directed the male outside in order to affect his arrest,” Lowe wrote in a release. “Constable Smit subsequently admitted his actions to his supervisors and the arrested individual was released from custody as he was improperly arrested.”

Saanich police Sgt. Steve Eassie explained that being intoxicated inside a home does not constitute a public place, although being outside does. “Once you are outside the threshold of your door, you are in a public place because you’re accessible to the public.”

A Saanich police investigation in 2012 proved the deceit and abuse of authority allegations, and Const. Smit was suspended without pay for seven days, and his rank was to be demoted to third-class constable.

According to Lowe, an officer is allowed to request a public hearing in circumstances where the discipline decision is dismissal or a reduction in rank. Smit contacted the OPCC in January 2013.

Lowe has recommended retired provincial court judge Jakob S. De Villiers preside as adjudicator. A date for the hearing has yet to be determined.

Eassie says the police department won’t comment further.

Smit has been with the Saanich police for four and a half years and is currently on administrative duties.

kslavin@saanichnews.com

 

Just Posted

Here comes the rain: Victoria can expect post Thanksgiving showers all week

Mild, rainy weather expected from Tuesday to Saturday

Opponents of Elizabeth May criticize her push to scrap temporary foreign worker program

May has proposed to scrap the federal program which supplies local business with temporary workers

Victoria woman uses loss to raise awareness of Pregnancy and Infant Loss Awareness Day

City of Victoria to recognize Pregnancy and Infant Loss Awareness Day Oct. 15

Calling all little yogis

Saanich yoga studio offering yoga classes for kids to encourage emotion control, healthy lifestyle

Monterey Faces: Meet lifelong Oak Bay resident Audrey Bruce

Monterey centre volunteer Linda Foubister interviews Audrey Bruce

VIDEO: Langley woman’s security camera records its own theft

Langley family discovers early morning grab was recorded

Canadian Snowbirds plane crashes before air show in Atlanta

Pilot lands safely after ejecting from jet

Share crash data, private insurers tell David Eby, ICBC

B.C. monopoly makes drivers retrieve their own records

B.C. VIEWS: Wolf kill, not backcountry bans, saving caribou

B.C.’s largest herds turn the corner from extinction

Pearson nets shootout winner as Canucks clip Flyers 3-2

Vancouver picks up second straight home win

Map on Elections Canada website sends Nanaimo-Ladysmith voters to landfill

Address for polling station correct, but Google Map address differs

BC Children’s Hospital launches 2 new virtual care sites bringing total to 19 across province

Provincial initiative allows pediatric patients to see health specialists through video

‘Wham-bam out the door’: Surrey man’s front yard left ruined by scamming landscaper

Resident warns neighbours to be careful of door-to-door salesmen

Most Read