By Trevor Busch
Members of the Taber Municipal Police Commission (TMPC) have learned a complainant has appealed Chief Graham Abela’s decision to dismiss a series of allegations leveled against town police officers.
According to Public Complaints Director Allen Herbst’s July-August report delivered to the commission on Sept. 12, there has also been three new citizen contacts addressed by Abela during summer 2018. All three were “resolved at this level and no Police Act investigations ensued.”
“The chief also concluded the investigation commenced earlier this year from a member of the public into the actions of three Taber police officers involving 12 allegations,” reads a statement in Herbst’s report. “A disposition letter was sent to the complainant, and he has since appealed the chief’s decision.”
Abela determined allegations 1-11 should be dismissed on the basis that there is “no reasonable prospect of establishing the facts necessary to obtain a conviction for misconduct at a disciplinary hearing against the officers named in the allegations.”
With regard to allegations five and 12, Abela dismissed them on the basis that the aspect of the complaints was “not of a serious nature” within the meaning of Sec. 45(4) of the Police Act, with the appropriate disposition being dismissal under Sec. 19(1)(A)(i) of the Police Service Regulation. Pursuant to Sec. 45(4)(1) of the Police Act, Abela’s decision on the matter is considered final.
“In my role as the PCD, I have been kept apprised of these matters, have been involved in a meeting with the public complainant, and have found the actions of the chief professional,” said Herbst in a concluding statement. “I have no concerns with regards to the actions of the officers involved and await the decision of the Law Enforcement Review Board.”
Following discussion, the commission voted unanimously to accept the Public Complaints Director Report for information.