MONCTON, N.B. — The RCMP has been convicted of violating the Labour Code for failing to provide its members with use-of-force equipment and training in connection with the 2014 New Brunswick shooting rampage that left three Mounties dead and two others injured.
Judge Leslie Jackson found the Crown did not prove its case on two other charges and issued a judicial stay on the fourth charge.
C8 carbine rifles were not available to general duty officers during Justin Bourque’s shooting spree in Moncton, and numerous witnesses have testified they could have made a difference.
Carbine rifles were approved for use in 2011, but their rollout was delayed on several occasions.
Jackson found the force guilty of failing to provide its members with the appropriate use-of-force equipment and user training when responding to an active threat or active shooter in an open environment.
He found the RCMP not guilty of failing to provide its members with the necessary information, instruction and/or training when responding to an active threat or active shooter event in an open environment.
He also found the force not guilty of failing to provide its supervisory personnel with appropriate information, instruction and/or training to ensure the health and safety of RCMP members when responding to an active threat or active shooter event in an open environment.
He stayed a charge of failing to ensure, in general, the health and safety of its members.
The defence argued at the trial that the RCMP exercised due diligence in its rollout of patrol carbines, while the Crown argued management knew front-line officers were at risk and the rollout of carbines took too long.
Constables Fabrice Gevaudan, Dave Ross and Doug Larche were killed, while constables Eric Dubois and Darlene Goguen were wounded when Bourque targeted police officers in hopes of sparking an anti-government rebellion.
The Canadian Press