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


Latest Canada & World News

  • Canada calls for more aid as groups brace for flood of civilians from Mosul

    World News CTV News
    Intisar Mateh, second left, washes the dishes as her daughter, Farah Mateh, right, plays with her friends in a camp for displaced Christians in Irbil, Iraq, Friday, Oct. 21, 2016. Iraqi refugees from areas near Mosul are eagerly following the offensive to drive the Islamic State group from the city and hope to return to their homes, but they also fear what they might find there. Source
  • 'No further actions' planned on dressage score-tampering allegations against Canadian judge

    Canada News CBC News
    The international governing body for the sport of dressage, the International Equestrian Federation (FEI), says it has completed an investigation into score-tampering allegations against a Canadian judge made shortly before the Rio Olympic Games this past summer. Source
  • Husky Energy wants more time for report after pipeline leak in Saskatchewan

    Canada News CTV News
    REGINA -- Husky Energy has asked for more time to submit technical reports on an oil pipeline spill into the North Saskatchewan River. The Saskatchewan government says Husky (TSX:HSE) has been granted a 30-day extension on the metallurgic report on the failed pipe, as well as on a geotechnical report on the land where the failure occurred. Source
  • Alleged victim in Quebec Liberal sex assault allegation speaks out

    Canada News CTV News
    MONTREAL -- The woman who alleged she was sexually assaulted by a Liberal member of the Quebec legislature says she's now ready to pursue a complaint against him. Alice Paquet tells Radio-Canada in a TV interview she was sexually assaulted twice by Gerry Sklavounos, a longtime member of the national assembly who stepped down from the Liberal caucus on Thursday to sit as an Independent. Source
  • Teacher hit with 200 charges in teen lesbian sex scandal: Cops

    World News Toronto Sun
    A pretty brunette teacher faces a staggering 200 count indictment after she was arrested for allegedly seducing two of her female students. Cops say private Catholic school teacher Randi Zurenko, 33, began preying on the two girls -- their ages weren’t released and are known in court documents as Victim 1 and Victim 2 -- in 2013. Source
  • Why Trump can still win the election

    World News Toronto Sun
    There is a 92% chance Hillary Clinton will be the next president of the United States, if you are to believe the latest polls from the New York Times. But don't count The Donald out just yet. Source
  • Aviation heir Dellen Millard to apply for legal aid to help fund 2 murder trials

    Canada News CTV News
    TORONTO -- A convicted killer who is the heir to a multi-million dollar aviation company will apply for legal aid to help fund his defence in two upcoming murder trials. Dellen Millard, who was convicted of first-degree murder along with Mark Smich in the death of Tim Bosma in June, told court Friday he cannot access his assets in order to hire lawyers. Source
  • Former Alberta Mountie charged with insurance fraud, on-the-job theft

    Canada News CTV News
    EDMONTON - A former Alberta Mountie is facing charges of theft and fraud. An agency that investigates police says the constable was working out of the Spruce Grove and Stony Plain detachment, west of Edmonton, at the time of the alleged offences. Source
  • Mars probe crash-landed, may have exploded, says European Space Agency

    World News CBC News
    Images taken by a NASA Mars orbiter indicate that a missing European space probe was destroyed on impact after plummeting to the surface of the Red Planet from a height of two to four kilometres, the European Space Agency said on Friday. Source
  • Twitter conversations on abortion, economy rise after Clinton vs. Trump debate

    World News CBC News
    While the question of who won Wednesday's U.S. presidential debate might be a hotly contested one, there is one arena in which Republican candidate Donald Trump is the undisputed winner: Twitter. At any given time, Trump, an avid Twitter user himself, gets 500 to 600 more mentions than his rival, Democratic candidate Hillary Clinton, according to James Rubec, a content strategist at the social media analytics firm Cision. Source