Clearwater RCMP Detachment’s new cadet arrived from Regina five months ago and is settling in nicely to his new role. Tyson Bruns, his wife Jenifer, and their two small children came from Langley. It will be another month before he is fully trained and on his own. We now have a very junior detachment, with the senior constable having just less than four years service, followed by a 2 1/2 year, 1 1/2 year, and a five months member.
Few to patrol highway
Traffic Services continues to run one man short, with no fulltime replacement in sight for at least the next year. It is not unusual, with only two highway patrol members stationed here, to have no Traffic Services on duty. At best we have one member on between Blue River and south of Barriere. Our General Duty members try to work the highway, but they often get tied up with Criminal Code investigations.
With the assistance of District of Clearwater and the TNRD representatives we were able to procure a reservist for a three-month stint. He has just been redeployed for a one-month contract with two one-month extensions being possible. Cst. Keith Davies lives in Kamloops, but works his shifts in the Clearwater Detachment area. His presence has really help enhance the police presence in our area.
Busy year for detachment
Clearwater Detachment responded to approximately 1,600 calls for service in the year 2010. Of these, over 1,200 calls or approximately 76 per cent were from the Clearwater area and 382 from other areas (Blue River 107, Avola 47, Vavenby 115, Little Fort 113). These included a wide variety of calls ranging from noise complaints and drinking in public to serious occurrences including spousal assaults, sexual assaults, and robbery.
• We had six sexual assault complaints in the past year, three in 2009.
• We responded to 25 complaints of assault in 2010, down from 46 in 2009
• We responded to six assault with weapons complaints in 2010, five in 2009.
These numbers are right on line with the provincial average for crime statistics in British Columbia.
Three main areas of effort
Because of the high volume of calls and the small number of members available, Clearwater RCMP continues to be a strategically focused organization. For the year 2010 we continued to focus on organized crime, traffic safety, and youth.
1. The first priority the Clearwater Detachment is focusing on is combating organized crime in our area. This includes targeting marijuana grow operations and drug traffickers. In 2010 we took down 14 grow-ops (11 indoor and three outdoor) with a total of 6,341 marijuana plants being seized and destroyed. In addition to this we seized 16.15 kg of dried pot and over $100,000 in cash. The street value of these seizures exceeds $6,465,000.
2. Both General Duty and Traffic Services focused on the second priority reducing the carnage on our highways by targeting drinking and driving, and aggressive driving. Clearwater members continue to try to maintain a high visibility on our highways, but due to resource issues their presence is down slightly this year. For 2010 there has been five fatalities, 22 injury crashes, and 179 property damage crashes (total of 206 crashes for the year). This is up over 2009 where there were four fatalities, 21 injury crashes and 125 property damage file (150 total).
There were 13 impaired driving charges and 26 24-hour suspensions handed out for the year.
Once again, there is zero tolerance for drinking and driving in our area. If a person is over the legal per se limit, he or she will be charged.
3. Members of the local detachment continue reaching out to youth as a third priority. We once again missed out on training a DARE (drug abuse resistance education) officer this year due to manpower shortages. We will be visiting the elementary schools this year with a condensed version of DARE taught to the Kindergarten to Grade 4 age group, as well as keep the School Liaison Program active.
– Stuart Seib (Sgt) is NCO-in-charge, Clearwater RCMP Detachment