Welcome to my Crime and Justice blog! I am a 19 year old criminal justice student at the University of Winnipeg. I advocate for prisoners' rights, human rights, equality and criminal justice/prison system reforms.

Monday, May 31, 2010

Two police officers plead not guilty to fabricating evidence against drug suspect

Two Winnipeg police officers are fighting allegations they fabricated evidence to build a stronger case against a suspected drug dealer.
Const. Graeme Beattie, 31, and Const. Paul Clark, 42, pleaded not guilty Monday at the start of their preliminary hearing, which will determine if there is sufficient evidence for them to stand trial. A court-ordered ban prevents details of the hearing from being published.
The pair were arrested in March 2009 after the Crown attorney stayed charges of trafficking and proceeds of crime against a 20-year-old man. The charges read that police "did with intent to mislead fabricate report and notes, with intent that it should be used as evidence in an existing judicial proceeding." The charges also state the officers made a "false statement" by accusing the young man of drug trafficking.
Both officers joined the police service in 2006 and were moved to administrative duties following their arrests. The preliminary hearing is expected to finish later this week.

Winnipeg officers deny fabricating evidence

Two Winnipeg police officers have denied allegations that they fabricated evidence and obstructed justice in their investigation of a suspected drug dealer.
Consts. Graeme Beattie, 30, and Paul Clark, 41, pleaded not guilty to charges of fabricating evidence, attempting to obstruct justice, and public mischief at the start of a preliminary inquiry into their criminal case on Monday.
A mandatory publication ban on the preliminary hearing prevents the reporting of any evidence given. The pre-trial hearing is to determine whether the Crown's case is strong enough to go to trial.
Manitoba Justice has hired lawyer Robert Tapper to act as an independent prosecutor.
The officers are accused of falsifying notes and reports that led to a man being charged with drug trafficking in May 2008, according to court documents obtained by CBC News when Clark and Beattie were formally charged.
The case against the suspected drug dealer, 20, wound its way through the courts for months until the Crown stayed the charges against the man in October 2008 on the day his preliminary hearing was set to begin.
An internal police service investigation was launched a month later, and the officers were charged in April 2009.
The mischief charges stem from the alleged falsified reports, which polices said caused officers to unnecessarily investigate a drug-trafficking offence.
Beattie and Clark are currently assigned to administrative desk duties within the police force. Each had three years of experience with the Winnipeg police at the time they were charged.

Fabricating evidence is not acceptable. Police are supposed to be protecting us and upholding the law, not breaking it. We need police that we can trust and not a dirty and corrupt police force in Winnipeg, who will do anything, just to secure a conviction against somebody.  

So who are we supposed to trust:
1) The police who swore to serve and protect?
2) The internal police who decided to charge their counterparts?
3) The crown that blows more cases than dynamite (in my opinion anyway).
4) The courts/judges that used to rely on testimony from these officers?
5) A drug dealer who's case was thrown out of court?
6) The government that tends to let the justice system remain the same despite many complaints and problems!
I'm not interested in the drugs but the accused dealer is probaly the most honest one of the bunch, including his defense lawyer. What a sad state justice is in Canada these days!

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