Delay in G20 police discipline process causes hardship, says Gridin
The Toronto Police Services Board’s decision to extend the deadline for laying G20-related disciplinary charges against eight officers has “condemned the officers to suffer continued economic and emotional hardship, possibly for years,” says Toronto criminal lawyer Lawrence Gridin in a written argument filed with the Ontario Divisional Court. The case was covered in a story in Lawyers Weekly. (See pdf below)
Gridin argued that nearly two years of investigative delay into the conduct of eight officers far exceeded the six-month deadline for investigations imposed by the Police Services Act. He argued that even though there have been no findings of misconduct, the officers’ careers have been put on hold while they wait for the disciplinary tribunal process to unfold, a process that may take years.
The eight officers asked the Divisional Court to judicially review the reasonableness of the Board’s decision to extend the six-month deadline. The Chief of Police and the Attorney General for Ontario asked the court to quash the judicial review application, arguing that it was premature. The Divisional Court agreed, but said that each of the officers could challenge the delay at their disciplinary hearings.
Gridin says the danger with the court’s approach is that it effectively immunizes Police Services Boards from any judicial oversight when they are deciding whether to extend deadlines for disciplinary investigations.
Lawyers Weekly- G20 police challenges found to be premature