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

  • Efforts to stop anonymous sources clash with U.S. 1st Amendment

    World News CTV News
    President Donald Trump railed against the news media Friday, saying reporters shouldn't be allowed to use anonymous sources. He said he's been a target of unrelenting criticism by unnamed people, and he predicted that negative stories would "dry up like you've never seen before" if anonymous sources were jettisoned. Source
  • Thousands of northern B.C. patients' X-rays, CT scans and ultrasounds may have been misread

    Canada News CBC News
    Thousands of patients in northwestern B.C. are being told their X-ray, CT scan and ultrasound results may have been improperly analysed. The images were taken at Terrace's Mills Memorial Hospital between October, 2016 and January, 2017. Source
  • Quebec broadens inquiry into Montreal police force

    Canada News CTV News
    MONTREAL -- The Quebec government is broadening its investigation into allegations of corruption and wrongdoing within the Montreal police force. Public Security Minister Martin Coiteux says municipal forces from Quebec City, Longueuil and Gatineau will help provincial police because the number of allegations has risen in recent days. Source
  • U.S. to stop using 'ISIL' in favour of 'ISIS'

    World News CTV News
    WASHINGTON -- The change of U.S. administrations has produced a change of terminology in the war against the Islamic State group. Out goes the name preferred by the Obama administration: the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant, or ISIL. Source
  • Authorities say fire was intentionally set at Florida mosque

    World News CTV News
    TAMPA, Fla. -- An intentionally set fire damaged a prayer hall at a Tampa-area mosque early Friday, investigators said. The arson occurred at the Islamic Society of New Tampa, Hillsborough County Fire Rescue said in a news release. Source
  • Alexandru Radita's parents guilty of first-degree murder in 15-year-old son's death

    Canada News Toronto Sun
    Rodica and Emil Radita intentionally killed their teenage son by withholding critical life-saving medical attention, a judge ruled Friday. Justice Karen Horner said both parents were guilty of first-degree murder in the death of 15-year-old Alexandru. Source
  • Winter Stations bring art and wonder to Toronto's Beach waterfront

    Canada News CBC News
    A design contest open to artists, designers, architects and landscape architects has transformed the winter waterfront of Toronto's Beach area. Here's a look at the winning entries, all constructed around lifeguard stands, seen on a morning when dense fog rolled in from Lake Ontario. Source
  • Charlie Angus registers with Elections Canada as NDP leadership candidate

    Canada News Toronto Sun
    Local MP Charlie Angus has officially registered as a candidate in the race for the NDP leader, making him the second person to officially do so after fellow MP Peter Julian. Elections Canada updated their list of registered candidates in the NDP leadership this week, to show that Angus submitted his paperwork on Feb. Source
  • 'Like Monty Python': N.B. drug conviction set aside after English woman tried in French

    Canada News CTV News
    FREDERICTON -- A New Brunswick court has set aside a woman's drug trafficking conviction after her trial was mistakenly conducted in French for no apparent reason. "I hate to say it, but it sounds like a Monty Python movie," said John McEvoy, a law professor at the University of New Brunswick. Source
  • Accused beauty queen killer not on cops’ ‘radar’

    World News Toronto Sun
    Ryan Alexander Duke looked shocked and haggard. Charged with first-degree murder in the cold-case slaying of beauty queen-turned-teacher Tara Grinstead, Duke’s arrest ended a long odyssey for her friends, family - and detectives. In court, he looked exhausted and disheveled. Source