Complaints Commission releases report on RCMP's handling of complaints involving Nicole (Ryan) Doucet
- Public Interest Investigation Report
July 10, 2013
Mr. Ian McPhail, Interim Chair of the Commission for Public Complaints Against the RCMP (Commission), today released the Commission's report on the Nova Scotia RCMP's response to requests for assistance from Ms. Nicole (Ryan) Doucet.
The Commission's public interest investigation was initiated in response to a request from Nova Scotia Minister of Justice and Attorney General Ross Landry and public concerns relating to the manner in which the RCMP dealt with issues involving Ms. Doucet prior to her March 2008 arrest for attempting to hire an undercover RCMP officer to kill her husband. Ms. Doucet alleged that the RCMP failed to protect her from domestic violence.
The Commission's investigation examined whether there existed any failure by the RCMP to protect Ms. Doucet or to follow its policies pertaining to domestic violence, and whether the involved members acted in a manner that would have caused them to ignore a situation where a victim needed assistance.
The Commission examined the RCMP's records of over 25 occurrences in which Ms. Doucet, Mr. Ryan or both had some involvement with the RCMP, 12 of which involved direct conflict between the two parties. The results of two separate RCMP internal investigations of the matter and various court records were also examined. Finally, the Commission interviewed Ms. Doucet, Mr. Ryan and the RCMP members involved with them prior to March 2008.
The Commission made 23 findings, including that:
- in the sole instance where domestic violence was reported, the RCMP's investigation was consistent with its policies pertaining to cases involving domestic violence;
- in all other instances, the RCMP members received no information that would permit them to form reasonable grounds to believe that Ms. Doucet was a victim of domestic violence;
- the RCMP conducted reasonable investigations and exercised reasonable discretion with respect to their dealings with the family.
"It is my conclusion that the RCMP did not refuse to assist Ms. Doucet; on the contrary, RCMP members were responsive to the family's conflicts," said Mr. McPhail. "I conclude that the RCMP acted reasonably in each of its dealings with Ms. Doucet and her family, and did not fail to protect her."
The Commission is an independent agency created by Parliament to ensure that public complaints made about the conduct of RCMP members are examined fairly and impartially. The Commission is not part of the RCMP.
Follow the Commission on Twitter @CPC_CPP.
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