Chief civilian director appoints civilian monitor

Posted June 16, 2014

NEWS RELEASE
Independent Investigations Office
For Immediate Release
June 16, 2014

SURREY – Chief Civilian Director Richard Rosenthal today announced the appointment of a civilian monitor to conduct an administrative review of the IIO’s investigation into the Sept. 10, 2012 death of Mr. Gregory Matters.

The review has been ordered under the Police Act, section 38.08 and appoints Mark Jette, a senior Vancouver lawyer, as the civilian monitor to conduct the review of the investigation.

Once completed, his report will be provided to the deputy attorney general and to the director of police services concurrent with its delivery to the chief civilian director.

The steps being taken today are being done to ensure the integrity of the investigation conducted by the Independent Investigations Office. In order for this process to maintain its independence and to ensure Jette can fulfill his role as civilian monitor, no further statements will be made at this time.

Quote:

Chief Civilian Director Richard Rosenthal –

“I have received a complaint forwarded to me by the deputy attorney general that raises a number of questions with respect to the investigation into the death of Mr. Matters.

“After my review of this complaint, I made the decision to appoint Mr. Mark Jette as a civilian monitor.   The appointment of a civilian monitor is a step contemplated by the Police Act to provide an extra measure of accountability where it is in the public interest to do so. Mr. Jette will have the mandate to conduct an independent administrative review related to the conduct of the investigation. It is not a re-opening of the investigation”.

Quick Facts:

  • The IIO was established under amendments to B.C.’s Police Act that came into force in July 2011, and conducts criminal investigations into police critical incidents that result in death or serious harm.
  • The IIO commenced operations on Sept. 10, 2012. Since that time, the IIO has concluded 67 investigations and has issued 43 public reports.
  • To ensure there is no perception of bias, the chief civilian director cannot be a person who is a current or former member of a police force or RCMP.
  • A special committee of the legislature is currently reviewing the administration and operations of the IIO – in particular, the chief civilian director’s progress towards having an office staffed with employees who have never been police officers.
  • Section 38.08 of the Police Act authorizes the chief civilian director to appoint a person who is not a current or former member of a police force in British Columbia or the Royal Canadian Mounted Police to review and assess the integrity of a specific investigation and for the chief civilian director to establish the terms of reference relating to that appointment.
  • The civilian monitor is entitled to access to any record of the IIO that is directly related to the investigation in respect of which the civilian monitor is appointed.
  • IIO staff and investigators are required to cooperate with the civilian monitor in the exercise of his powers or performance of duties.

Learn More:

About the Independent Investigations Office:  www.iiobc.ca

Contact:

Kellie Kilpatrick:  Kellie.Kilpatrick@iiobc.ca