Police in Canada are ignoring cases of domestic violence against police officers, lawyers say, and there are no clear guidelines for what to do about them.
Article Continued BelowArticle Continued BELOWArticle Continued Here’s what you need to know about domestic violence: 1.
When does domestic violence become a crime?
Police must act to stop domestic violence, not just to solve the issue, said the Canadian Association of Chiefs of Police’s chief of police, Peter MacKay.
They should enforce policies to protect the safety of officers and the community.
But when they fail to act, there’s no real protection for victims.
The Canadian Association for Equality and Justice, a human rights advocacy group, said officers in Canada don’t have a legal obligation to protect victims.
Instead, they have a moral obligation to report the crime to the police, but the duty to report falls on them.
“They have to be held accountable,” said the group’s chief executive officer, John Macdonald.
Police must also report the crimes to the courts, he said.
Who can report domestic violence?
Domestic violence is a serious crime and police must act as quickly as possible, Macdonald said.
He said the public has a right to know when an officer has been involved in domestic violence and it should not be a matter for police to make decisions on whether or not to prosecute an officer.
“What the public needs to know is, this is not an isolated incident and the police are not immune from this problem,” he said, adding that there’s a presumption that an officer will act in the best interests of their officers and victims.
“They need to be fully informed and that’s not happening.”3.
What should officers do if they have been the victim of domestic abuse?
The Ontario Civil Liberties Association said it was “not a crime” to report domestic abuse.
The association said that if police did not act quickly, “they are placing themselves at risk.”
The association urged police to report incidents that are deemed “serious,” not a matter of public interest, to the OLCA, which investigates complaints about police conduct.4.
What if the police have been called to investigate domestic violence but haven’t taken action?
Macdonald said officers should always report domestic assault, not to get a better idea of the facts.
In Canada, the OCCA has issued guidelines for the police to follow.
In Ontario, the police can’t respond to a complaint about a domestic assault unless there’s clear cause to believe the allegation to be a crime.5.
What happens when an allegation of domestic assault is not made?
If a police officer feels he or she is the victim, they should “consider” filing a report and refer it to the SIU, Macdonas said.
But he said police officers should also refer allegations of domestic harassment or violence to the Ontario Civilian Police Complaints Commission, which handles complaints against police.6.
How can I know if the complainant is the alleged victim?
If the complainant has asked police to take the matter seriously, MacDonald said, the complainant should tell the officer that the allegation is false.
“That’s the way we handle this,” he added.
If the officer does not believe the complainant, the officer should contact the OPC and report the matter.
The OCC also said the police should tell a person who is involved in a domestic incident to “immediately stop the alleged conduct” and contact the SIUP.7.
Can police be sued?
The OPC says they cannot be sued for failure to act.
Macdonald says the police must take responsibility for their actions.
“We are not asking the police officers to go on the offensive.
We are not seeking a personal attack.
We’re trying to hold them accountable for their conduct,” he told the CBC.8.
What are the legal ramifications of a police investigation of domestic attacks?
The law says that officers who do not act within a reasonable time after being called to report a domestic attack have no duty to take any action and have no obligation to file a report.
The Crown can take a civil action if the officer fails to take reasonable steps to investigate, investigate, prosecute or report the domestic assault.
The court can also award money damages.