BC Public Safety Minister Mike Farnworth says a decision has been made as to who leads the independent investigation into historical sexual abuse allegations against a number of Prince George Mounties.
The Alberta Serious Incident Response Team is now in charge of the file – a civilian agency that reviews serious interactions between police and the public.
Farnworth added B.C.’s director of police services ordered the independent investigation by an external agency into these allegations.
In June of 2004, Judge David Ramsay was sentenced to seven years in prison for sexually assaulting Indigenous girls.
Last month, the Union of BC Indian Chiefs, said nine Mounties and one lawyer who are connected to the file have yet to be charged. Recent allegations claim the Mounties did nothing to investigate the claims, some of which date back more than two decades.
Farnworth issued the following statement on Wednesday in the BC Legislature:
“The allegations of historic misconduct of members in Prince George are disturbing and our government takes these allegations very seriously.
“The Civilian Review and Complaints Commission (CRCC) issued an interim report to the RCMP commissioner outlining the failure of the RCMP to take action to address these complaints. The RCMP commissioner agreed with the CRCC’s findings and recommendations.
“While this report is directed at the RCMP, I have spoken to my federal counterpart Minister Marco Mendicino about these serious allegations and B.C.’s director of police services has ordered an independent investigation by an external agency into these allegations.
“Prior to announcing the investigation, the director of police services undertook direct conversations with family members who have called for reforms and to the Assembly of First Nations Regional Chief to inform them of his decision.
“Our government is resolute in its commitment to ending systemic violence against Indigenous women, girls and 2SLGBTQ+ people, particularly in northern B.C. and the cases which involve the police. I recognize the wisdom, advocacy and ongoing action of family members, survivors, community leaders and partners. Their ongoing dedication to identifying and acting to prevent, protect and respond to violence against Indigenous women, girls and 2SLGBTQ+ peoples has had an immeasurable impact on all British Columbians.
“The lead agency for this independent investigation is the Alberta Serious Incident Response Team (ASIRT). As this is now an active investigation, no further comment will be made.