Citing lack of jurisdiction, the B.C. office of the police complaint commissioner has dismissed a complaint about the appointment of police officers to the board that governs pistol- and Taser-packing transit cops.
Bruce Brown, deputy commissioner at the OPCC, told the Straight that the agency has no authority over the composition of municipal police boards, including the South Coast British Columbia Transportation Authority police board. Brown noted that the Ministry of Public Safety and Solicitor General has jurisdiction.
In a February 8 letter to complainants Tara Ivanochko and Paul Keeling, Brown noted that two members of the six-member panel are civilians, and that it’s his understanding that another civilian will be appointed to the board in July.
Ivanochko and Keeling, who are members of the Civil Society Development Project, filed the complaint with the OPCC on January 4.
Keeling told the Straight that the appointment of civilian representatives isn’t an issue.
“The issue that’s important is the fact there’s any police on the board at all,” Keeling said. “It’s not standard practice for municipal police boards to have any police on them at all. There’s always exclusively civilian representation. The transit police appears to be a category on its own, in a way that nobody seems to have examined or questioned.”