The RCMP recently released a number of disciplinary decisions on officer conduct for 2021 and 2022. The decisions include at least 10 officers from B.C.
Some allegations involve officers operating police vehicles under the influence of alcohol, purchasing and using cocaine, sending sexual text messages to a survivor of domestic violence and attempting to commit insurance fraud against ICBC.
Under the RCMP Act, conduct hearings are initiated when an officer’s dismissal is sought based on the allegations against them.
These are some of the decisions outlined in the latest report, based on evidence and testimony made during the various hearings.
Const. Wilhelm Scheepers – Williams Lake RCMP
Williams Lake RCMP Const. Wilhelm Scheepers admitted to three allegations of misconduct.
The first allegation found that Scheepers sent hundreds of harassing text messages to a Prince George woman that caused her to fear for the safety of her and her young children.
The second allegation involves an incident on July 20, 2019, when Scheepers was off duty. He slowed his vehicle down alongside two 20-year-old women for several minutes at a slow speed. Despite being asked to leave them alone, Scheepers repeatedly asked one woman for her name, phone number and invited her to get into his vehicle.
The third allegation involves Scheepers driving erratically before going over a meridian and driving on the wrong side of the road before fishtailing onto gravel and crashing into a ditch.
Scheepers was taken to the RCMP detachment to provide a breath sample and was uncooperative and volatile in the room. It was later determined Scheepers was impaired by alcohol while driving.
Scheepers was fined 45 days’ pay, is ineligible for promotion for three years and will communicate at least once a month with a monitoring company.
Const. Ryan Fulcher – Detachment unknown
RCMP const. Ryan Fulcher was accused of exposing himself to two teenage girls in 2018.
On the evening of Sept. 29, 2018, two teenage girls were walking along a street when they observed a naked man in a large front window of a residence who appeared to be masturbating.
The two girls went home and told their parents, who reported it to the RCMP.
A member of the local RCMP detachment investigated the incident and determined the man to be Fulcher.
Fulcher admitted to the conduct board that he was naked in the living room of his residence with the curtains open and the lights on but denied fondling himself — though he admitted it was possible that his hand “briefly” touched his penis. Fulcher said the incident was a momentary lapse of judgement due to extreme sleep deprivation.
This was Fulcher’s first offence and prior to this incident has had an “excellent career” in the RCMP, the Conduct Board was told.
Fulcher was fined 10 days’ pay and forfeited 10 days of annual leave. He was given the opportunity to continue his career with the RCMP, but any future misconduct could likely lead to his dismissal.
Const. Navjot Singh Sandhu – Detachment unknown
Const. Navjot Singh Sandhu was dismissed from the force over allegations that he committed acts of domestic violence against his wife, including pushing her down the stairs while she was pregnant.
Sandhu was also found to have consumed cannabis prior to legalization and when confronted by his wife “became enraged and destroyed property.” He also sent threatening text messages to a former co-worker.
Sandhu claimed that the allegations of domestic violence were not credible and said his wife had not reported the allegations to police. His wife testified she was reluctant to report the abuse because Sandhu would often threaten to “destroy her life” if she were to go to the RCMP. Sandhu also told her that the RCMP officers were “his friends” and “wouldn’t believe her”.
The Conduct Board found it was highly likely that Sandhu had abused his wife and was dismissed from the RCMP for his conduct.
Cpl. Scott Falkingham – Kelowna RCMP
RCMP Cpl. Scott Falkingham faced three allegations of misconduct for failing to properly disclose a quantity of methamphetamine that came into his possession in 2009 while he was off duty. Other accusations included off-duty consumption of non-prescribed medication, and failure to properly account for property that came into his possession during the performance of his duties.
On the first allegation, Falkingham came into possession of the methamphetamine in the summer of 2009 when he was helping his sister clean her property prior to a sale. While cleaning, Falkingham found drug pipes and drugs that his sister believed belonged to her husband at the time.
Falkingham took the drugs to his residence and they were not turned into the RCMP until Feb. 2020 when Falkingham’s spouse turned them over to police. The bag contained drug pipes and 24 grams of drugs.
The second allegation is related to Falkingham’s consumption of non-prescription drugs. While helping his friend move his daughter into a new residence in Calgary, Falkingham consumed alcohol and two non-prescription benzodiazepine pills, which were sleeping pills prescribed to his spouse.
Falkingham was found the next morning unconscious on the bathroom floor by his friend who later confronted him about his drug use and convinced him to see a psychologist and a doctor.
The third allegation relates to multiple instances where Falkingham failed to properly account for drugs seized during his duties. In each case, Falkingham took weeks to complete property reports and enter exhibits.
Falkingham was fined 15 days pay, demoted for a period of three years, directed to go under medical treatment for his drug use and directed to work under a close supervisor for a period of one year.
Const. Greg Ternan – Vernon RCMP
Vernon RCMP Const. Greg Ternan faced two allegations of failure to provide complete, accurate and timely accounts of incidents and four allegations of a failure to be diligent in the performance of his duties.
Ternan was found to have improperly handled evidence in a case of a stolen cash check, reporting that the check was destroyed and there was “no evidence”. Both were false, the check was not destroyed. Ternan admitted that he failed to provide a complete and accurate report of the incident and misled other officers with his inaccurate account.
One of the allegations against Ternan was withdrawn.
Ternan was fined 11 days’ pay and forfeited 10 days of annual leave.