Freedom Convoy: Ottawa police see spike in protest complaints, but most are cleared

The Ottawa Police Service has seen an increase in complaints from members of the public in the first quarter of 2022, largely due to the three-week occupation of the ‘Freedom Convoy’, but few have gone to trial. giving rise to an action.

A report prepared for Monday’s meeting of the Ottawa Police Services Board lists 327 public complaints to the Ottawa Police Service in the first three months of the year. In the first quarter of 2021, there were 77 complaints.

The report says 275 of the complaints were directly related to police conduct during the downtown Ottawa convoy occupation; however, the Office of the Independent Police Review Director (OPIRD), which oversees public complaints against the police, dismissed 95% of them.

The OIPRD says it screens complaints that are made in bad faith, those that are frivolous or vexatious, and those that are not in the public interest.

Some of the complaints the OIPRD dismissed included several complaints that the Ottawa police were not doing enough to manage the occupation, as well as complaints that the police were doing too much, particularly with regard to the seizure fuel.

There were also 19 internal conduct-related complaints in the first quarter of 2022.

According to the report, 288 investigations were concluded, including 253 deemed frivolous, vexatious, more than six months after the occurrence of the facts on which it is based, involving a third party where the complainant was not affected or deemed not to Being guilty. public interest. Twenty-four other complaints were unfounded and eight complaints were withdrawn.

Three complaints resulted in informal disciplinary measures. None resulted in a disciplinary hearing.

In addition, the OIPRD has consolidated several similar complaints into one file. Sixty-five complaints for inaction were grouped together, as well as five complaints for difference in treatment.

The Ottawa Police Services Board will meet Monday at 4 p.m.

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