Conduct Case Summary MPCC-2014-010

In March 2014, the Military Police (MP) investigated a complaint made by an insurance company agent to the effect that the complainant had reportedly made threats towards her. When the MP contacted the complainant for his version of events, he contested the MP’s jurisdiction to investigate the matter, refused to meet with the investigator and asked that the file be transferred to the civilian police force.

An MP member questioned the complainant’s supervisor and obtained a formal statement from the insurance company agent. The investigation was then assessed as complete, and the MP recommended that criminal charges be laid. The results of the MP investigation were provided to the complainant’s chain of command for their information, as per standard procedure. When an MP member informed the complainant that the MP investigation was closed, the complainant asked why he had not been questioned, and he was told that it was because he had refused the request. The complainant did not agree and said he felt he was being intimidated by the MP.

In his complaint, the complainant alleges that the MP abused its power by using its authority to illegitimate ends in order to provide undue help to his unit to his detriment.

The Deputy Commander of the Canadian Forces Military Police Group reviewed the complaint in the first instance and concluded that it was unfounded.

The complainant requested that the MPCC review the complaint, under section 250.31 of the National Defence Act.

The Military Police Complaints Commission (MPCC) reviewed the allegation by examining the following three issues: (1) the large number of MP members involved in the file; (2) the apparent changes in jurisdiction between the MP and the civilian police force; and (3) the link between the final decision on the file by the MP and the complainant’s chain of command.

The MPCC conducted an investigation and found that the complainant’s allegation was unsubstantiated. The MPCC’s investigation also revealed that the large number of investigators involved in the file was due to the investigators’ availability and the trial period with patrollers dedicated to another garrison. There was no evidence to indicate an attempt was made to ensure a specific investigator was assigned to the file in order to manipulate the investigation. Furthermore, the MPCC’s investigation confirmed that there was, at least at the outset, some confusion about which police agency had jurisdiction to investigate the matter. However, no information indicates that the MP illegitimately assumed jurisdiction in the investigation. Lastly, the information gathered by the MPCC reveals that the MP acted independently.

The MPCC’s recommendation in relation to this file was that the garrison’s Military Police members involved in this matter review their note-taking and documentation of measures taken in the Security and Military Police Information System (SAMPIS) to ensure they are adequate.

In reaction to the MPCC’s report, the Canadian Forces Provost Marshal noted the MPCC’s finding and accepted the MPCC’s recommendation.

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