No special treatment: Calgary cracks down on police breaking road rules

Calgary's police commission is cracking down on law enforcement officers who disobey the rules of the road, with new penalties and tighter guidelines.

See Full Article

The Calgary Police Service has introduced a demerit points system for officers who are caught on photo radar breaking traffic rules, as well as better education and in-car technology to monitor how officers are driving.

Calgary Police Chief Roger Chaffin said his officers aren't "comfortable" with the changes, but he acknowledged they're necessary. "Accountability for policing in North America, and particularly in Calgary, is high," Chaffin told CTV Calgary on Tuesday.

The move comes after a CTV Calgary investigation uncovered more than 1,600 incidents of police vehicles involved in traffic offences, from 2012 to 2014. Offences ranged from speeding to running red lights. In more than half the cases, the police vehicles involved did not have their emergency lights on. CTV Calgary learned that only 24 tickets were issued in relation to the offences, and in total, only six of those tickets were paid.

On Tuesday, Police Commission vice-chair Howard Shikaze said he was "not surprised" by the violations, but he still felt they were "something that normally would have been caught."

The commission launched an audit as a result of the CTV Calgary investigation, and came back with a slew of changes to the city's Automated Traffic Enforcement program, in an effort to address officer-related violations.

"We're participating in the public process to hold our members accountable," Shikaze told CTV Calgary.

The changes include:

  • An internal demerit points system
  • Standardized terminology
  • Training and education for offenders
  • Accountability and deadlines
  • New in-car technology
  • An appeal process for officers

Chaffin said the demerit points, which can add up to a suspension, are an effective way to enforce the rules with officers.

"Those demerits help us change behaviour," he said.

In addition to the accountability changes, about 20 per cent of unmarked police vehicles have been equipped with brake-monitoring technology, so supervisors can identify when an officer is driving fast. Supervisors can then contact the officer directly by phone to offer "real-time feedback," Chaffin said.

"It's like your supervisor is sitting beside you, saying hey, slow down," he added.

Police are also cracking down on officers who register their personal vehicles to the Calgary Police Service address, to dodge photo radar tickets.

"There is no getting away with summons on your personal vehicles," Chaffin said.

With files from CTV Calgary



Advertisements

Latest Canada & World News

  • Gunman that targeted Washington pizza shop led turbulent life

    World News CTV News
    SALISBURY, N.C. - The man accused of firing an assault rifle inside a Washington restaurant appears to have lived an aimless life that became turbulent in the weeks before he was drawn to the nation's capital by a fake news story. Source
  • Pakistan opens probe into plane crash that killed 47

    World News CTV News
    GUG, Pakistan - Pakistani authorities have opened a probe into the deadly plane crash in the country's northwest the previous day that killed all 47 passengers and crew, a spokesman said Thursday. Pervez George of the Civil Aviation Authority told The Associated Press that experts are working in the hillside village of Gug in the district of Abbottabad, where the small twin-propeller aircraft crashed and burst into flames after developing a fault in one of its two engines. Source
  • Search for survivors continues in Indonesia as death toll climbs to 102

    World News CBC News
    Rescue workers, soldiers and police combed through the rubble of a devastated town in Indonesia's Aceh province Thursday, resuming a search for earthquake survivors that was halted at night by rain and blackouts. More than 100 people died in the shallow and powerful quake that struck northeast Sumatra before dawn on Wednesday. Source
  • Motion to impeach South Korea's president introduced

    World News CBC News
    South Korea's parliament introduced a bill on Thursday to impeach President Park Geun-hye, setting in motion a vote to oust the embattled leader engulfed in an influence-peddling scandal. Parliament is expected to vote on impeaching Park on Friday and opposition parties have said they believe they will get the two-thirds majority needed to pass the bill. Source
  • Trump takes to Twitter to criticize union leader critical of Indiana deal

    World News CTV News
    WASHINGTON - President-elect Donald Trump is slamming a union leader who criticized his deal to discourage air conditioner manufacturer Carrier Corp. from closing an Indiana factory and moving its jobs to Mexico. Trump tweeted Wednesday evening: "Chuck Jones, who is President of United Steelworkers 1999, has done a terrible job representing workers. Source
  • Rebel loss in Aleppo could have domino effect

    World News CTV News
    ALEPPO, Syria -- Aleppo shakes with explosions and gunfire day and night in both the government-- and rebel-held sides of the divided Syrian city. But for supporters of President Bashar Assad, there is a growing sense of imminent victory. Source
  • South Korean parliament sets up presidential impeachment vote

    World News CTV News
    SEOUL, Korea, Republic Of - South Korea's opposition-controlled parliament has formally introduced an impeachment motion on President Park Geun-hye. This sets the stage for a likely impeachment vote Friday. A parliamentary official reported the motion to a plenary session Thursday. Source
  • Campus cop shot teen holding knife at Nevada high school

    World News CTV News
    RENO, Nev. -- A campus police officer shot a knife-wielding student at a Nevada high school on Wednesday during a confrontation witnessed by dozens of other students, Reno police said. The 14-year-old boy was reported in critical condition Wednesday night at a Reno hospital, Police Chief Jason Soto said. Source
  • Italian PM Renzi quits as search begins for new leader

    World News CTV News
    ROME -- Italian Prime Minister Matteo Renzi resigned Wednesday evening, his self-inflicted penalty for staking his job on constitutional changes voters resoundingly rejected earlier in the week. He will stay in a caretaker's role at the request of Italy's president until a new government can be formed. Source
  • Winnipeg man pleads guilty to bigamy

    Canada News Toronto Sun
    A former Winnipeg man married to two women for more than a year has learned what happens in Vegas doesn’t always stay in Vegas. The 43-year-old man pleaded guilty in Winnipeg court Wednesday to one count of bigamy. Source