Edmonton Police Services Sergeant charged with Assault

Jan 12, 2011 by:

And so he should be, from what I can tell.  Sgt. Kevin Douglas                                                   is a 17-year veteran of the Edmonton City Police.

On March 4, 2010 he got into an argument with one of the prisoners at Edmonton’s downtown cells.  He apparently lost it on the guy, who had to be taken to hospital, and also required plastic surgery to repair damage to one of his ears.

The entire thing was caught on the closed-circuit video system, but Edmonton police are refusing to make that video public.

“That video is before the courts, as well, so it will not be available for viewing, but we do have a copy of that video that has gone over as evidence to the courts.”

Douglas was, naturally, placed on administrative leave for the duration of the investigation.  Nothing quite like the feeling of getting a paid vacation after beating the crap out of someone, right?

That’s something that the police really have to change.  This stupid policy of giving paid vacations to cops who’ve broken the law.

Unfortunately, you can bet that it will never change as long as the police are in charge of investigating themselves.

On the upside, Sgt. Douglas is finally facing assault charges, so that’s a good thing.  What is less clear is whether or not he’s still getting paid.  I would hope that since he’s been formally charged, any paid vacation he’s been on has now ended.

From what the Edmonton Sun reports, however, I don’t think that’s the case.

Edmonton Police Service Deputy Chief Neil Dubord says in that article that Sgt. Douglas is now re-assigned to a “non-operational role”, whatever that means.

According to that same article, this isn’t the first time Douglas has been the subject of a police misconduct investigation.

Douglas was cleared of all charges in November 2009 in relation to an incident involving a man with cerebral palsy who was zapped with a conductive energy device before being strip searched in police custody.

The victim in that case has since died of cancer.

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CBC News- http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/edmonton/story/2011/01/07/edmonton-police-officer-charged-assault.html

An Edmonton police sergeant faces assault charges over an incident that occurred in a police cell last March.

Sgt. Kevin Douglas, 41, is charged with assault and assault causing bodily harm.

Douglas is alleged to have been in an altercation on March 4, 2010, with a 46-year-old man who was lodged in cells at police headquarters in downtown EdmontonThe 17-year veteran of the force was placed on administrative duty three days ago.

The lawyer for the man who was involved in the altercation, Erika Norheim, said her client needed plastic surgery to repair a ripped ear.

“He suffered some fractured ribs, as well, and he’s been unable to work, so he was quite seriously injured,” she said.

The incident was caught on video but will not be released, said acting deputy chief Neil Dubord….(who is now chief of Vancouvers Transit Police)

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Calgary’s chief Crown prosecutor says an Edmonton police  officer will never stand trial on charges of assaulting a man in custody.

The Crown entered stays-of-proceedings Friday on two charges faced by Sgt. Kevin Douglas because they say the complainant, Todd Checknita, said he wouldn’t attend the trial.

Checknita denies ever definitively telling the Crown he wouldn’t appear in court, only that he was having trouble getting a flight to Edmonton. He showed up in court on Monday only to learn that there would be no trial.

His lawyer is asking the Crown to reactivate the charges, but Chief Crown Prosecutor Lloyd Robertson said that will not happen.

“There’s no possibility the Crown will reverse its decision,” he said. “That would be improper, highly improper for the Crown to do this.”

Checknita, 47, alleges Douglas assaulted him in a cell at Edmonton police headquarters in March 2010, leaving him with two black eyes, broken ribs, a torn ear and bruises on his arms. What transpired in the cell that night was caught on video.

Douglas, 42, was facing charges of assault and assault causing bodily harm.

On Tuesday, Checknita’s lawyer filed a $150,000 civil lawsuit against Douglas, former police chief Mike Boyd and two other police officers.

Douglas still faces an internal disciplinary hearing. He is currently on administrative duty.

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