RCMP H Division 2016 Year in Review
Table of contents
- Message from the Commanding Officer
- Wi'katikn peji-apu'kwetoq Nikanus
- Officer in Charge of Criminal Operations / Nujo'tk teli-maliaptmumk O'pla'tekemk
- Provincial Policing priorities
- Committed to connecting with our Aboriginal communities
- Highlights from Halifax District
- Highlights from Northeast Nova District
- Highlights from Southwest Nova District
- Federal Policing
- Operational Support Services
- Administration and Personnel
- Thank you for your kind words…
- The RCMP is hiring!
- Stay connected
Message from the Commanding Officer
As Commanding Officer for the Nova Scotia RCMP, I want to thank you for your support. The RCMP has a longstanding history in Nova Scotia and after 85 years we remain just as proud today to call ourselves your Provincial Police. Moving forward we will continue to expand our strong foundation for the future by investing in this province that we call home.
Over the past year we have settled into the new Ingonish Detachment, the first design of its type in Canada, which serves the approximately 5,000 residents of Ingonish and surrounding areas, as well as the roughly 400,000 annual visitors to the Cape Breton Highlands National Park. The Bible Hill Detachment is undergoing significant renovations to expand and upgrade the facility, doubling its size and bringing all RCMP resources from the area together in one building. We have spent an additional two million dollars upgrading detachments throughout the province and in the coming years we will continue to invest in Nova Scotia's communities with our sights set on a building in New Minas that will house our detachment and district offices.
This year we opened the "H" Division RCMP Training Centre, a state-of-the art, purpose-built facility designed specifically for RCMP training. We are extremely proud to have one of three Training Centres of its kind in the country which contributes to our first-class training abilities to enhance officer and public safety.
The Nova Scotia RCMP takes great pride keeping the communities we live and work in, a safe place to call home. We do this through partnership with you. Throughout the province the RCMP works with their communities to develop year-long plans that are unique to their needs. Engaging with communities to identify and understand the local issues affecting people's safety and quality of life, contributes to a tailored and strategic approach to policing.
Some of our greatest partnerships are with our hundreds of volunteers such as the Nova Scotia RCMP Veterans' Association and those who work as Citizens on Patrol, Auxiliary Constables or Advisory Committee members. We rely on our volunteers for their expertise and knowledge and we are fortunate to have such dedicated people who connect community and police. We have made tremendous progress in our efforts to engage and partner with our various multicultural groups in Nova Scotia. Enhancing relationships and creating new ones has allowed the RCMP to better serve our unique and diverse communities.
Safety on our roadways continues to be one of our priorities and the dedicated work of our employees and our policing partners has contributed to an overall reduction in serious and fatal motor vehicle collisions in Nova Scotia over the past five years. This decline was achieved in partnership with you because safety on our roads is every motorist's responsibility. Please continue to assist police by reporting suspected impaired and distracted drivers and please drive responsibly.
In reading this document I hope that you are able to see how the RCMP makes a positive difference in your community. This province is our home, and like you, we want to ensure that Nova Scotia always remains one of the most desirable places to live in Canada.
Wi'katikn peji-apu'kwetoq Nikanus
Ni'n nujeyaqik Nuji-kla'qa'lua'tijik No'pa Sko'sia, ketu' kinua'tuloq ta'n tetuji wla'liek teli-apoqnmuiek. Ki's sa'q Nuji-kla'qa'lua'tijik etl-lukutijik No'pa Sko'sia, ki's pemiaql ukmuljin te'siska'q jel na'n te'sipunqekl tel-lukutiek aqq kiskuk me' mekite'tmek kis-tlua'tinen ninen na elukewulnek kilew No'pa Sko'siaewaq. Ne'kaw siawi-mlkiknewa'ten telpukuimk elmi'knik kulaman wli-apoqntitesnen etlqatmu'ti'k.
Ula kis-pmiaq newtipunqek, kisi-piskewsultiek piley mtmo'taqnewo'kuo'm etek Nikanisk (Ingonish), amskwes telikk kisitasik tami Kanata, na'te'l weji-lukewujik na'tamiaw 5000 te'sijik wikultijijik Nikanisk aqq kiwto'qiw, aqq elt 400,000 te'sijik pejita'jik Cape Breton Highlands National Park. Bible Hill mtmo'taqnewo'kuo'm pemi-il-lukwasik kulaman atki'ktitew aqq aji-kejikawewe'tew, ta'pu atki'ktitew aqq mawtetew milamu'k koqoey ta'n nuji-kla'qa'lua'tijik kiwto'qiw nuta'tij. Kisi-we'wmek na'tamiaw ta'pu kjipituimtlnaqaikl il-lukwatmnen mtmo'taqnewo'kuo'm msit tami No'pa Sko'sia aqq elmi'knik siawi-apoqntitesnen wutanl No'pa Sko'sia aqq elapultiek piley mtmo'taqnewo'kuo'm l'tunen New Minas ta'n tetew wet-lukutimk aqq mtmo'taqnewo'kuo'm wjit kiwto'qiw.
Ula kis-pmia'q newtipunqekek panta'tasikip Etl-kina'masimk wjit Nuji-kla'qa'lua'tijik ta'n etek maw-piley koqoey ta'n tl-kina'mueten. Welta'sultiek ala'tunen newte'jk ula ne'siskl Etl-kina'masimkl etekl Kanata mita wel-kina'mujik nuji-kla'qa'lua'tijik ikalsultinew aqq maliamanew wenik No'pa Sko'sia.
Nuji-kla'qa'lua'tijik No'pa Sko'sia mekite'tmi'tij ta'n tel-wl-maliamaptmi'tij wutanl ta'n etl-lukutijik aqq wikultijik. Maw-lukuti'k. Msit tami No'pa Sko'sia Nuji-kla'qa'lua'tijik maw-lukuti'tijik wenik wutanl ilutmi'tij tel-nuta'q ta'n tl-lukutinew te's wutan newtipunqek. Wiaqa'tu'titl wutanl ta'n tujiw wesku'tasik ketu'-tl-lukutimk kulaman msit wen kjijitutew aqq nsittew ta'n tel-lukuti'tij Nuji-kla'qa'lua'tijik.
Maw-wl-lukutie'k piamiw kjipituimtlnaqn nuji-apoqnmua'tijik nkutey Wet-lukutijik Nuji-kla'qa'luemk No'pa Sko'sia aqq Ta'nik Nuji-klaptaqatijik, Nuji-koqqwa'taqatijik kisna naspultijik ilutasik ketu' tl-lukwemk. Elita'sualkitjik nuji-apoqnmua'tijik mita natawa'qa'taqatijik aqq kejitaqatijik aqq ketloqo weli-iknmakweyek ala'lanen wenik tel-wli-apoqntmi'tijl wutanmual aqq nuji-kla'qa'lua'tijik. Knekk pejitaiek teli-wjinu'kwalsiek wiaqa'lanen aqq mawi-apoqnmatultinen milamuksultijik No'pa Sko'siaewaq. Ankua'tuek tela'matultiekik wenik kisna pile'k ila'matultie'k apoqnmuksiek ninen Nuji-kla'qa'lua'tijik aji-wl-lukewanen keknue'kl aqq milamu'kl wutanl.
Ne'kaw attiknetmek mu jileyin wen awtik aqq tetuji melkuktmi'tij ntlukewinu'minaq aqq ta'nik maw-lukutie'k pemi-aji-tkle'jit wen kesitesink kisna siktesink No'pa Sko'siaewe'l awti'l ula kis-pmiaql nanipunqekl. Aji-tkle'jit tela'tekek maw-lukuti'k aqq msit wen alkwi'teket jiko'tk awti. Tl-wla'lin siawi-apoqnmuinen aqq kinua'teke etlite'mn nemi't wen alkwi'teket toqo a'qatapit kisna se'k elita't aqq ki'l menaqaj alkwi'teke.
Kis-kitmoq ula wi'katikn , ajipjutm nmitunew tetuji wla'tu'tij kwutanmuew Nuji-kla'qa'lua'tijik. Ula saqmawewa'ki wikulti'k, aqq nkutey kilew, menuekeyek No'pa Sko'sia ne'kaw maw-klu'ktn etlqatmumk Kanata.
Officer in Charge of Criminal Operations / Nujo'tk teli-maliaptmumk O'pla'tekemk
Throughout 2016, RCMP employees in Nova Scotia have engaged with our communities, partners and officials at the municipal, provincial, national and international levels to strengthen existing relationships and create new connections. Our actions have been to ensure the safety of Nova Scotians and Canadians. I know that our employees have strived to achieve investigative excellence, seek truth and remain neutral while demonstrating compassion every single day. Their efforts are performed selflessly for a job selected because of their desire to help others, with pride, often in the most difficult of circumstances.
Our 2016 Year in Review is a glimpse of our success and a testament of our ongoing commitment to meet and surpass expectations. Policing requires a holistic approach and we have truly appreciated your support and assistance as we delivered policing services reflective of our priorities, including road safety, cybercrime and crime reduction. I hope that our story is told well at every opportunity throughout the year and that the following pages will allow you another occasion to see our engagement and level of commitment throughout Nova Scotia.
We are proud to be working with and for you as your Provincial Police service.
Ne'kaw 2016ek, Nuji-kla'qa'lua'tijik etl-lukutijik (RCMP) No'pa Sko'sia toq-lukuti'tijik wutanl, wunaqapemuaq aqq kjikanewe'k nikanusk, pilue'l saqamawewa'ki'l, Kanata aqq pilue'l wmitkiual mlkiknewa'tunew tel-toq-lukuti'tij aqq we'jianew pile'k mawkwanew. Ta'n tel-lukutiek apoqntik wlpmian telo'ltimk No'pa Sko'sia aqq Kanata. Kejitu elukewuksie'k attikneta'jik wl-panuijkatmnew koqoey teliaq, kwilmnew teliaq aqq newte' tleywanew msit wenl, wenqwajite'taqatijik aqq menaqaj tlo'ltijik te'sikiskikl. Elukwatmi'tij wtlukwaqnuew mu newtite'lsulti'k mita ketu' apoqnmua'tijik wenik aqq mekite'tmi'tij ta'n tel-lukuti'tij, tlia'j na jijuaqa metue'k.
Ula wi'katikn kis-wi'kasik wjit ula kis-pmiaq newtipunqek ekinua'tekek koqoey wela'sik tel-lukutiek aqq ta'n tel-melkuktmumk wije'wmnen aqq siawita'nen koqoey menuaqluksiek tla'taqatinen. Nuji-kla'qa'luemk na maw-lukutimk aqq wela'liek teli-apoqnmuiek ta'n tel-lukutiek nkutey maliaptmekl awti'l kulaman ma' nesana'nukl, kelaptmek mu o'pla'teken wen mattaqte'kney-iktuk , naji-tekle'jktn o'pla'tekemk, tel-maw-lukutie'k wenik L'nue'kati'l aqq pilue'k wenik kulaman kisa'ten naji-wla'sin telo'ltimk eymu'k.
Ajipjutm ta'n tel-lukutiek menaqaj wesku'tasiktn te'sipunqek aqq ta'n koqoey ewikasik wije'ti'tij ula wi'katikn wesku'tasiktn aqq nmitunew wenik ta'n tetuji-sespite'tmek aqq melkuktmek tel-lukutiek msit tami No'pa Sko'sia.
Mekite'tmek tel-maw-lukuti'k aqq ta'n tel-lukewulek ninen saqmawewa'kiewaq nuji-kla'qa'lua'tijik.
Provincial Policing priorities
Each year, the Nova Scotia Department of Justice and RCMP work together to identify areas of public safety that require a strategic, targeted focus. The RCMP works to address each area through enforcement efforts, innovative public safety programs and effective education on preventing crime. In 2016, the Provincial Policing priorities were Crime Reduction, Cybercrime and Road Safety.
Reducing crime and contributing to the overall safety of Nova Scotia communities continues to be a top priority for the RCMP. Much of what we do is intelligence-led, based on information gathered by members on patrol and investigators which is reviewed by our criminal analysts. This evidence-based intelligence allows us to strategically allocate resources to address existing and predicted crime with a high degree of success. We also participate in a number of initiatives and programs meant to reduce and prevent crime.
Keeping communities safe
In an effort to ensure Nova Scotians are compliant with existing firearms legislation, the Safe Communities Initiative was introduced. Nova Scotia RCMP led the initiative with the support and participation of all police agencies in the province. Individuals identified as having restricted or prohibited firearms in the province were contacted by their local police to determine the status of their firearm(s). If the person wished to keep the firearm(s), police then offered to provide assistance completing the registration paperwork. If the person wished to turn in their firearm(s) for destruction, an officer retrieved the weapon(s). Officers also provided education on laws surrounding firearms and ownership.
During 2016, over 1,200 firearms were brought into compliance and over 100 were destroyed, ultimately improving community and police officer safety in Nova Scotia.
If you have unwanted firearms, please contact your local police service or RCMP through their non-emergency line to make arrangements for police to take possession of the firearms. For security reasons, please do not transport firearms to local police departments or RCMP detachments. For general information on firearms, including firearms licensing and registration requirements, please visit the RCMP's Canadian Firearms Program.
Helping at-risk youth
The Nova Scotia RCMP continues to champion the Hybrid Hub, a youth intervention and diversion approach that brings together community services to address issues impacting at-risk youth.
Hybrid Hubs include representatives from a variety of sectors including health, education, law enforcement and community services. Representatives meet and put forward names of youth who are at risk. A Risk Screening Tool (detailed questionnaire) is then used to understand what issues are impacting the young person, what services would provide the best support and how to ensure that the individual is given timely access to those services.
Currently there are 14 Hybrid Hubs established throughout Nova Scotia including: Lower Sackville, Cole Harbour, Tantallon and Victoria, Antigonish, Pictou, Guysborough, Cumberland, Hants, Digby, Annapolis, Queens, Lunenburg and Kings Counties. There have been over 100 referrals to Hybrid Hubs and much of this success is due to the RCMP's partnership with Schools Plus and Restorative Justice.
Hybrid Hubs ultimately reduce crime, increase productivity in schools, restore peace at home and reinforce a sense of community support for the youth who are involved," says Cst. Jennifer Botham, Nova Scotia RCMP Hybrid Hub Coordinator. "
Most times caregivers welcome us with open arms to try anything that might make a difference because they have typically exhausted every referral-type service in their area. Bringing all of the service providers together to brainstorm and create a plan to help the family allows us to come up with a well-informed plan to make a difference."
Cybercrime uses technology as an instrument to help commit a crime or as the target of a crime. With the evolution of technology, many investigations involve some sort of device; be it a smartphone, laptop or desktop computer. As such, our investigators often get assistance from the our Divisional Technological Crime Unit (Tech Crime) because of their specialized techniques and expertise. Tech Crime collects evidence through the search, seizure and analysis of a variety of electronic devices. In 2016, Tech Crime recovered active and deleted data by analyzing over 600 mobile devices and over 150 computers. Nova Scotia RCMP has also invested in new technology and training to increase Tech Crime's capabilities to recover data and locate evidence that was not previously accessible.
It starts with education
In 2016, the RCMP delivered over 250 cybercrime presentations to people of all ages on information and strategies to avoid becoming a victim. Senior Safety Coordinators who work in RCMP offices throughout Nova Scotia also connected with seniors to increase their awareness about cybercrimes. Programs, courses and campaigns informed many seniors on how to protect themselves and their hard earned money. Senior Safety Coordinators help them avoid becoming victims of telephone and Internet cyber scams that are specifically targeting seniors.
In June 2016, grade five students from Aspotogan Consolidated Elementary School in Mill Cove worked with School Resource Officer, Cst. Rod Francis of Lunenburg County District RCMP to create a video titled "We Care". The video appears on YouTube and is an educational tool that empowers students to spread the message that bullying and cyberbullying is wrong and can have devastating impacts.
In December 2016, the RCMP Foundation, in partnership with the Royal Bank of Canada (RBC) and Nova Scotia RCMP launched TechConnect: Connecting Kids with Cops through Technology at Eskasoni Elementary and Middle School. The RCMP Foundation's TechConnect program works in partnership with local RCMP detachments to use the power of technology for social good. With the support of the school, each student who enters the program receives a new computer to complete research and school assignments. This promotes creativity and supports safe, respectful social interaction among their peers when using social media.
To keep our roadways safe, RCMP Traffic Services and RCMP detachments focus on the primary causal factors of fatal and serious injury from motor vehicle collisions, impaired driving, not wearing a seatbelt, speeding/aggressive driving and driver inattention/distraction.
Despite the dangers of impaired driving, people continue to get behind the wheel while intoxicated by alcohol or drugs. Through strict enforcement, the RCMP is working to dispel the myth that driving while impaired will go undetected.
Throughout 2016, RCMP charged 1,069 drivers with impaired driving by drugs or alcohol and refusing to provide a sample. Additionally, 441 administrative driving suspensions for impairment were issued, which is when a driver is operating a vehicle with alcohol in their system, but it is below the legal limit. Administrative suspensions can result in a driver losing their license for a minimum of seven days.
The RCMP have worked tirelessly to train over 160 frontline members with specialized training to detect impaired drivers in 2016. Police officers have options they can use roadside to help determine if a driver is operating while impaired by alcohol or drugs. They can administer a Standard Field Sobriety Test (SFST) or Alcohol Screening Device (ASD) or they may go to an RCMP detachment to have a Breath Technician determine blood content or a Drug Recognition Evaluator (DRE) conduct a Drug Influence Evaluation (series of physical tests). Impaired driving investigations can be complex, especially when they involve both alcohol and drugs.
Canada Road Safety Week ran May 17 – 23, with Nova Scotia RCMP focusing enforcement and education efforts on impaired driving, wearing seatbelts, speeding/aggressive driving and driver inattention/distraction. RCMP conducted checkpoints throughout the province and through social media shared safety tips and information with our thousands of followers. During the seven days the RCMP conducted over 1,000 traffic stops that resulted in 630 aggressive driving related charges, including: speeding, following too closely, unsafe lane changes and careless driving to name a few. There were 346 charges under various sections of the Nova Scotia Motor Vehicle Act ranging from failing to wear a seatbelt to aggressive driving. On May 21, RCMP conducted a one day impaired driving enforcement blitz that resulted in 12 impaired driving charges and 15 roadside driving suspensions as a result of alcohol impairment.
National Safe Driving Week ran throughout the first week of December, with Nova Scotia RCMP increasing their presence on roadways and delivering road safety messages first hand. The RCMP provided a glimpse into our checkpoints through a live tweeting event called #CheckPointLive. Members of the Strategic Communications Unit issued tweets and photos from checkpoints in Inverness and Port Hawkesbury, and invited people to follow along. Social media followers joined in, asking questions and interacting with the Force. During the #CheckPointLive checkpoints, over 250 vehicles were checked, five Summary Offence Tickets were issued and two individuals were charged with unlawful storage of firearms.
National Impaired Driving Enforcement Day was on December 3, and checkpoints were conducted throughout the day. As a result of this single enforcement day, 138 check stops took place and over 5,000 vehicles were checked. This resulted in 13 impaired driving charges and six roadside suspensions.
Every Tuesday our loyal Facebook and Twitter followers check in to see what is coming for #TrafficTuesday. Along with a roadsafety tip, they are guaranteed a bit of humour. #TrafficTuesday is a success because we engage our followers in the discussion to ensure we are providing helpful information and answering questions. We encourage you to checkout #TrafficTuesday by following us on Facebook (Royal Canadian Mounted Police in Nova Scotia) and Twitter (@RCMPNS).
RCMP Cop Light Bling music video spotlights "Move Over" law and goes viral
In 2015, RCMP in Nova Scotia issued 3,113 tickets for Distracted Driving while Operating a Motor Vehicle. Efforts continue to be focused on educating the public on the dangers of using a cell phone while driving and the importance of keeping their eyes on the road. By not paying attention for a split second, motorists run the risk of being involved in a serious injury or fatal collision.
In April the Nova Scotia RCMP debuted Cop Light Bling, a music video created by the Nova Scotia RCMP promoting Nova Scotia's "Move Over" law. Since 2010, the provincial law states that when emergency responders are stopped on the road with their emergency lights flashing, motorists must slow to 60 km/h or the posted speed limit – whichever is the lesser of the two – and move into the lane farthest from the stopped emergency vehicle, if it is safe to do so.
The idea of Cop Light Bling came about because our officers on the frontline were concerned for their safety and the safety of others. The RCMP figured what better way to raise awareness about the law than to create an entertaining and comedic parody music video. The video was released and it went viral! Within days there were over 600,000 views on the Nova Scotia RCMP YouTube channel and it was featured on news outlets across Canada and around the world. Tens of thousands of Nova Scotians watched the video and their conversations on social media told us that they understood the law. True success came when officers and first responders reported back that they felt safer because there was a noticeable change in motorist's behaviour.
The video was such a success that the Nova Scotia RCMP were recipients of a Connected COPS Award for the innovative use of social media in law enforcement. Up against police agencies from around the world it was an honour to receive this recognition at the Social Media in Law Enforcement (SMILE) conference in California.
- I've seen a lot of drivers who don't change lanes and I think most of them just don't know they were supposed to. If only they saw this cool video LOL. Awesome job guys!
- I'll definitely remember to change lanes when I see a police car on the shoulder of the road from now on.
- I mean seriously, now every time I see a cop car pulling someone over, I'll think of this song. Lol Hopefully it won't be me getting pulled over. "You almost hittt myyyy leg."
Committed to connecting with our Aboriginal communities
The RCMP has a long and productive history of service to Aboriginal communities in Nova Scotia and connecting with our Aboriginal communities is extremely important. It is through these connections that we provide relevant, culturally appropriate and effective policing services.
To build and maintain these relationships, our frontline officers engaged in over 900 crime prevention and community policing activities in Aboriginal communities and visited with over 40 Elders throughout 2016. Elder visits are an important part of community policing in Aboriginal communities as it exposes members to the community and provides an opportunity for Elders to pass along crime prevention information. In addition, 'Coffee and Conversation' events took place where members of the community, including Elders had the opportunity to visit with police and discuss issues, identify problem areas and consider possible solutions.
Aboriginal youth are also an important part of the equation when it comes to building connections. Our officers spent time in schools, serving breakfasts, playing floor hockey, or simply handing out high-fives. In support of education, a number of information sessions took place on topics including hunting, bicycle, firearms and outdoor safety, senior's abuse, Internet fraud, the dangers of impaired driving and how to properly use child restraints.
The Nova Scotia RCMP will continue to work closely with Aboriginal communities in an effort to recruit Aboriginal candidates. A diverse group of employees gives the RCMP an enhanced understanding of cultural issues and allows us to better relate to the citizens we serve.
Highlights from Halifax District
Eight people arrested, drugs, cash and firearms seized
A ten month investigation by the Integrated Guns and Gangs Unit, made up of investigators from Halifax District RCMP and Halifax Regional Police (HRP), led to police identifying several stash houses and a criminal network with connections from Yarmouth to Cape Breton. As part of the investigation, police searched residences in Lantz, Halifax, Lower Sackville and Dartmouth, seizing approximately seven kilograms of cocaine (including crack cocaine), just over 28 kilograms of a cocaine cutting agent, steroids, $15,000 cash, an assault rifle, ammunition and a hand grenade.
Police charged eight people with various charges including Trafficking a Controlled Substance (cocaine), Possession of a Controlled Substance and several firearms offences. The investigation is ongoing.
Stop the gun violence
Throughout 2016 there were 12 homicides within the Halifax region policed by Halifax District RCMP and Halifax Regional Police. Intelligence indicated that several of those involved knew and were targeting one another. Investigators worked tirelessly to determine who was responsible and to date have laid charges in six homicides. This is a problem that requires a holistic response from our entire community.
Halifax District RCMP worked closely with HRP, municipal and provincial government officials, community-based organizations, communities and citizens to emphasize the need for people to put down their guns. Safety in the community is everyone's responsibility and police cannot do this alone. If you have information please share what you know by coming forward to police directly. You can also contact the Nova Scotia Department of Justice Rewards for Major Unsolved Crimes Program or anonymously through Nova Scotia Crime Stoppers.
First degree murder charges laid in Tylor McInnis homicide
On August 23, 2016, police received a report of a stolen black Honda Civic and a short time later the vehicle was located in a church cemetery in North Preston. When police arrived they found 26-year-old Tylor Donovan McInnis deceased in the vehicle. Immediately the Homicide Unit of the Integrated Criminal Investigation Division (CID) began an investigation.
On September 28, five men were charged with multiple offences including First Degree Murder, Attempted Murder, Assault with a Weapon, Robbery, Extortion, Kidnapping, Unlawful Confinement and Accessory After the Fact.
In order to be able to lay such serious charges, a significant amount of work and cooperation is required. Throughout this investigation, the Homicide Unit of the Criminal Investigation Division received invaluable assistance from many units including RCMP Police Dog Services, RCMP Federal & Serious Organized Crime Section, RCMP Tactical Troop, RCMP Forensic Identification Services, RCMP Halifax District Street Crime Enforcement Unit (SCEU), HRP Quick Response Unit, HRP K9 and various Criminal Investigation Division and patrol teams from both police agencies. The investigation is continuing.
New friendships, new perspectives
During the first weekend of May, Preston RCMP, Tim Hortons Camp Foundation and community partners hosted Pathways to Friendship Camp at the Tim Hortons Camp in Tatamagouche. The camp was designed for 75 grade six students who would soon find themselves in grade seven, potentially at new schools with different cultures and pressures. Through a variety of activities and discussions, the youth were able to mitigate some stereotypes in their communities and make new friends in a safe environment.
Back to the books for RCMP Seniors Academy
There may be no recess bell or final exam, however the Halifax District RCMP Seniors Academy ensures that every student graduates with an A+ in crime prevention and how to lead healthier lifestyles.
The 2016 Seniors Academy was held over six weeks in Eastern Passage and attended by 35 seniors from the community. The annual program is led by the RCMP and facilitated by numerous professionals covering a broad range of topics including how to spot fraudsters, how to access Emergency Medical Services, what information 911 dispatchers require, and tips for healthy living. The Seniors Academy has proven itself to be an extremely beneficial program to the community and attendees, and this year not one student was sent to detention!
Gun amnesty removes over 150 guns off our streets
In an effort to remove unwanted firearms off the streets of Halifax region, Halifax District RCMP partnered with the Halifax Regional Municipality (HRM) Public Safety Office and Halifax Regional Police on "Fares for Firearms," a gun amnesty campaign.
From September 12 – 23, Halifax region residents could turn in firearms in exchange for 50 Metro Transit tickets (valued at $100). Lack of transportation or money to buy transit tickets is a struggle for some community members however participants who had no use for transit tickets were encouraged to re-distribute the tickets to those in need.
The campaign was a success, yielding 152 guns including 123 long guns/rifles, 18 hand guns and 11 pellet guns. Unregistered, unsecured or unwanted firearms have the potential to cause serious harm and every gun turned over to police for disposal has a positive impact to the safety of our communities.
Musquodoboit RCMP seize 11 firearms
In May, Musquodoboit Harbour RCMP Detachment received information about a man who lived near a school who was allegedly using firearms in a dangerous manner. Given the risks associated with inappropriate firearm use and his home's close proximity to a school, an investigative team was put together. With the assistance of the RCMP Emergency Response Team, a search warrant was executed and 11 firearms were seized from the home. Two men, ages 37 and 51 were arrested and are facing multiple firearms-related charges.
Highlights from Northeast Nova District
"The Hall Boys" in Eskasoni – shining stars who are making their community a better place
As an RCMP School Safety Resource Officer, Cst. Duma Bernard extends his work far beyond the school to ensure youth in the community feel like positive, productive members of society. In 2011, Cst. Bernard recognized that there were youth in Eskasoni who could benefit from volunteering as part of a community service group. He identified the youth and spoke to their parents and the Hall Boys were born.
"The Hall Boys" is an Eskasoni First Nation-based youth group of young boys and girls who volunteer their time to give back to their community. From organizing dances to shoveling snow for the elderly and serving community meals, youth are provided guidance and empowered to make a positive difference. Over the years they have developed a reputation for helping Elders and making their community a better place.
The name "Hall Boys" comes from a combination of the words "H" Division (Nova Scotia RCMP) and "all boys" which references the original group of all young men and their old meeting place at the local community hall. Over the years, the Hall Boys have grown to include preteen and teenage boys and girls, but they maintain their original name to remind them of their past.
"Volunteering affects how youth see themselves. When young people feel like positive, productive community members, they act that way," said Cst. Bernard. "The young men and women act as role models for younger community members. They're like stars that need a chance to shine. You give them a chance to do something good, and they will."
In recognition of his work with the Hall Boys, Cst. Bernard was awarded the 2016 Imperial Order of the Daughters of the Empire (IODE) RCMP Police Community Service Award at a ceremony in Toronto this year. As a national women's charitable organization, the IODE annually honours an RCMP member, unit or detachment for exemplary public service to the community outside of regular duties.
Youth group partners with the RCMP to promote road safety in Pictou County
The week before March break you could turn on your radio in Pictou County and hear young people from the community talking about the dangers of distracted driving. In 2016, Pictou County District RCMP worked with the Northumberland Regional High School Youth Advisory Group to produce public service announcements to create awareness about driving behaviours. In conjunction with this campaign, the police conducted a distracted driving blitz to promote the message through enforcement. The RCMP used an unmarked police car to spot distracted drivers and as a result laid over 20 charges.
The enforcement blitz was followed by a mock collision demonstration at Northumberland Regional High School. RCMP, Emergency Health Services and local fire departments came together to show students, up close and personal, the devastating impact of a two-vehicle collision. Students also heard from RCMP and Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD) who shared personal experiences related to impaired driving, leaving a lasting impression on the students.
Crime analysts – using local crime trends to reduce and prevent crime
In 2016, Northeast Nova RCMP began using the ComStat model to use crime data and intelligence to prevent crime. ComStat is a Computer Statistics Processing Program and in Northeast Nova, two crime analysts review and analyze local crime data every day to determine crime trends and identify potential locations where future crimes may be committed. The RCMP officers in the area meet to review the information and develop operational plans to address the people, places and issues that are compromising the safety of the neighbourhoods.
A real example of how ComStat works: In the Town of Antigonish there were a number of people who had reported their cars had been broken into and police were receiving calls of other mischief-related complaints. With the help of a crime analyst, RCMP investigators were able to map the locations and predict when and where the perpetrators may strike next. Using a variety of investigative techniques, the investigators identified and arrested several suspects who are now before the courts.
Keeping our roads safe
Northeast Nova District RCMP officers are patrolling roadways in an effort to reduce the incidents of serious injury and fatal collisions. Members are conducting investigations involving impaired driving by drugs or alcohol, transporting and trafficking of illegal drugs, dangerous operation of motor vehicles and stunting. One particular traffic stop in Victoria County in 2016 resulted in the seizure of more than two kilograms of cocaine and a large quantity of contraband cigarettes that were headed to Newfoundland. This is just one of the many examples of the hard work of RCMP officers on the frontline who work every day across Northern Nova Scotia to keep our roads safe.
RCMP are working with youth in Pictou Landing First Nation
In February and March, RCMP held a winter survival skills workshop and a healthy lifestyles workshop, where youth had an opportunity to participate in outdoor winter activities and learn about the dangers of drugs.
Cst. Shaylene Sutherland accompanied a grade nine student to the RCMP Training Academy in Regina, Saskatchewan for the RCMP Youth Leadership Workshop. While there, participants connected with other teens from across Canada and developed skills to bring back to their community.
In April, Pictou Landing First Nation and Nova Scotia RCMP co-hosted a weekend camp, "Empowering our Youth through Promoting Wellness" with a goal of preventing violence against young women and girls. Eighteen youth, ages 12 to 18, from Pictou Landing First Nation listened to presentations and took part in activities and discussions that focused on empowering the next generation of female role models.
They learned how healthy choices build positive, nurturing relationships, how to prevent violence, and how to develop confidence while discovering their cultural identity. They shared knowledge of the Seven Sacred Teachings, made drums and dancing shawls, attended a naming ceremony, shawl presentation and an optional sweat lodge.
Cst. Shaylene Sutherland, one of the organizers explained how a camp like this can prevent violence against young women and girls. "If we provide our youth with the necessary information to help them make healthy choices in their lives, that's where positive changes start. This camp encourages nurturing and kinships so these youth will also be positive role models for the next generation."
In May, RCMP organized the first annual Fire Safety Day after they recognized the community could benefit from fire education. Fire departments from Pictou Landing First Nation, Pictou Landing, Little Harbour and Trenton, as well as the Department of Natural Resources took part. Citizens were able to get hands-on experience with fire equipment, speak with first responders, participate in activities and share in a BBQ.
Empowering citizens to reduce Crime in Cumberland County
Throughout 2016, the Amherst, Oxford, Parrsboro, Pugwash and Springhill detachments of Cumberland County District RCMP have worked to reduce crime through proactive programs for seniors, adults, teens and kids.
Police helped people understand the dangers of impaired driving first-hand through the Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD) Go-Kart Challenge. In this simulation, participants wore specialized goggles to simulate impairment and attempted to navigate a go-kart through a course. The RCMP also assisted elementary schools in dealing with bullying and peer victimization through the 'Walk away, Ignore, Talk it out, Seek Help' (WITS) program and safety education through the Cops 'n Kids program.
The Cumberland County Senior Safety Program, supported by the RCMP and Amherst Town Police, hosted free Safety Academies with weekly two-hour information sessions. The RCMP partnered with agencies including the Nova Scotia Health Authority, the Municipality of Cumberland County, the Town of Amherst, MADD Cumberland County Chapter, the Nova Scotia 55+ Games Society and Amherst Curling Club. Topics covered in the sessions included information about fraud, scams, Motor Vehicle Act updates, home safety and security, senior health, emergency preparedness and nutrition.
The Seniors Celebration is a Cumberland County District RCMP annual event for seniors. The day-long social event builds a sense of community and promotes health and well-being. Seniors participate in safety sessions in the morning and enjoy games in the afternoon. Youth also attend as it provides a venue for them to connect with seniors.
Highlights from Southwest Nova District
RCMP crime analyst prediction leads to arrest
In January 2016, a Berwick woman noticed footprints in the snow that led to her living room window. She reported it to police and then in February called police when she noticed evidence to suggest someone had been in her home.
Kings District RCMP began an investigation and set up surveillance. A third incident occurred when the woman observed a man on the property engaged in an indecent act. Police immediately attended the scene but the suspect had fled. To assist the investigation the officers engaged the RCMP Southwest Nova crime analyst because of their expertise in predicting crime. The crime analyst reviewed every piece of information and predicted when the next incident was likely to occur. Based on this information, the RCMP attended the home on the specific day and observed the suspect entering the victim's property while committing an indecent act. The RCMP arrested and charged the male with Criminal Harassment, Voyeurism and Trespassing by Night.
The intelligence produced by the crime analyst gave investigators the information they needed to arrest this person and hopefully restore a sense of safety for the victim.
World Elder Abuse Awareness Day
Senior Safety Programs in Southwest Nova Scotia came together on June 15 for World Elder Abuse Awareness Day (WEAAD). The goal was to raise awareness about elder abuse and neglect, and promote the resources and services available to seniors in Nova Scotia. This year, all Seniors Safety Programs and RCMP detachments in Southwest Nova partnered with local Royal Bank of Canada (RBC) branches to raise awareness about this important issue. RCMP, bank employees and citizens took part in the day-long event that provided information on elder abuse awareness, prevention, and support. Events were hosted at participating RBC branches in Southwest Nova.
RCMP recovers stolen items using helicopter surveillance
In July, over $100,000 of equipment including a truck, trailer and ATVs were stolen from a recreational equipment company in Oakhill, Lunenburg County. Through their investigation, Lunenburg District RCMP determined that some of the stolen items were at a home in Three Mile Plains. RCMP Air Services became involved and used a helicopter to survey the residence aerially. The surveillance enabled RCMP on the ground to locate three stolen side-by-side ATVs and a trailer and the suspect was arrested at the scene. The matter is currently before the courts.
RCMP on land and at sea
Southwest Nova District is home to many coastal communities and the RCMP is responsible for enforcing safety on our waters. However, the RCMP cannot do this alone. RCMP officers work closely and share intelligence with partner agencies such as the Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) and Fisheries and Oceans Canada (DFO). Through the sharing of information it became apparent that small marine vessels were often not reporting their arrival in the Atlantic Region to CBSA. To address this the RCMP, DFO and CBSA created a team to increase the number of marine patrols. The team is made up of over a dozen RCMP members (including Police Dog Services) as well as officers from DFO and CBSA.
They track marine traffic through the Marine Security Operations Centre (MSOC) that is located within the HMCS Dockyards in Halifax. MSOC is where various government agencies work side-by-side to collect and interpret marine-related intelligence. When the information suggests the potential for illegal activity, law enforcement is able to intercept and lawfully board suspicious vessels, to investigate for possible criminal, immigration, customs and fishery offences. The marine patrol team is working to keep our coastlines safe and preventing the potential for drugs and other contraband from making its way into Nova Scotia's communities.
If you spend time on or near the water and observe something suspicious, please take note of the time, date and location (including GPS coordinates if possible), nature of activities observe and a description of the individual(s) and vessel(s) and report it to the RCMP by calling 1-800-803-7267 or anonymously through Nova Scotia Crime Stopper at 1-800-222-TIPS.
Cops 'n Kids – making a difference in Annapolis County
Since 2010, the Annapolis County Cops 'n Kids program has provided safety education to more than 650 grade seven students. Over 140 junior leaders and 100 adult chaperones have also volunteered their time to make Cops 'n Kids a reality. Through the program, the RCMP lead sessions on topics ranging from Internet safety to drugs and bullying. Participants learn ways to protect themselves, build positive relationships and each year they experience a weekend away at camp.
In 2016, over 80 grade seven students from Middleton Regional High School, Bridgetown Regional High School and Lawrencetown Education Centre participated in the program, along with 21 junior leaders from the senior sections of participating schools and 30 adult volunteers. The group visited the Tim Hortons Children's Camp in Tatamagouche and learned about crime prevention and challenged themselves with activities such as archery and leadership games. Campers also learned about different RCMP units including the Police Dog Service, Explosives Disposal Unit, Traffic Services and Air Services.
"It's rewarding to watch these youth grow," says Cst. David Fairfax, Annapolis County Cops 'n Kids coordinator. "We're seeing kids who used to participate return as junior leaders and chaperones because of the impact the program had on them."
Citizens there when we need them!
When Lunenburg District RCMP members travel to Big Tancook Island, they can always count on a warm welcome from lifelong resident, Mr. Lee Cross. Cross is always ready to lend a hand and helps ensure police are well positioned to respond to emergencies when on the island. In October, Lunenburg District RCMP responded to a shooting on the island and became unexpectedly stranded due to poor weather conditions. With members unable to safely travel back to Chester, Lee answered the call and stepped in to help, providing additional vehicle fuel, meals and even lodging.
Regardless of where you are in Nova Scotia, the RCMP are a part of the communities we serve. There are many unsung heroes who contribute to public safety in their community. Citizens like Mr. Cross continually step-up to assist and we thank you for that.
Federal Policing employees work on a number of projects including long-term investigations that focus on serious and organized crime groups. Federal Policing officers are usually dressed in plain clothes and in some cases, operate undercover. They are required to follow criminal activity around the globe and work closely with domestic and international law enforcement partners such as Canada Border Services Agency, Department of National Defence and the US Federal Bureau of Investigation and Drug Enforcement Administration.
Federal members investigate the highest criminal threats that have a connection to Nova Scotia. These crimes are sophisticated which requires investigators to be adaptive and flexible because their investigations can take them across the country and around the world. Federal investigations often involve partnerships with local, national and international law enforcement agencies.
In 2016, there were many ongoing Federal investigations, some have resulted in charges in other countries and some will result in people being charged in Nova Scotia and other provinces. Regardless of where the criminal is charged, the crimes being committed are connected to our province.
Federal investigations take time and can be unpredictable. Each investigation requires an array of policing techniques and at various stages involves members who are experts in financial crime, legal support, criminal intelligence, technological crime, marine security, explosive devices and covert operations.
As Nova Scotia's Provincial Police and Canada's national law enforcement agency, the RCMP investigates threats to our national security, primarily terrorist and criminal activity. In Nova Scotia, members within the National Security Enforcement Section (NSES) collect, share and analyze information and intelligence that involves threats to our security or those related to criminal extremism/terrorism. In 2016, they contributed to several successful investigations but most of their work is top secret and for various reasons cannot be shared publicly. The work of NSES and their partnerships with domestic and foreign agencies contributes to Nova Scotians' being able to feel safe in our province.
Outlaw Motorcycle Gangs - Stay out of Nova Scotia
In 2016, Outlaw Motorcycle Gangs (OMGs) became an enforcement priority for all law enforcement agencies in the province. The RCMP Combined Forces Special Enforcement Unit (CFSEU) is working on this priority in partnership with Nova Scotia's law enforcement community. Outlaw Motorcycle Gangs are looking to expand their criminal network and our message to them is to stay out of Nova Scotia. When OMGs establish themselves in a province there is an increase in drugs and criminal activity, despite the belief held by some that these criminal groups are harmless and don't partake in criminal activity.
RCMP adapting to the dangers of fentanyl
This year, the drug fentanyl appeared in Nova Scotia and it is now being imported and sold illegally with tragic consequences. Fentanyl is a powerful prescription painkiller about 100 times more potent than morphine. Fentanyl has been mixed with other drugs such as heroin and cocaine and it has been used in tablets made to look like prescription drugs. Overdoses have occurred where individuals were not aware they were consuming fentanyl. It is odourless and tasteless making it hard to detect. To describe its potency, it takes only two milligrams of pure fentanyl (the size of about four grains of salt) to kill the average adult. Fentanyl poses a significant risk to public safety and the safety of first responders who are exposed to this drug.
The Nova Scotia RCMP is adapting to the danger that fentanyl presents to employee personal safety and to the public. The RCMP has undertaken awareness and education on this drug to protect Nova Scotians and other first responders who may come in contact with fentanyl. In Nova Scotia, RCMP members are learning how to safely handle this highly toxic drug and have been trained on what to do if they encounter fentanyl or someone who may be overdosing on it.
All frontline officers in Nova Scotia have been issued Naloxone which is a temporary antidote for opioid overdoses, including those caused by fentanyl. Equipping our frontline with the ability to administer Naloxone is for their safety and protection and it will help to save lives. The work in this area will continue well beyond 2016 and the RCMP will continue to adapt to protect themselves and Nova Scotians.
Financial Crime teams investigate complaints related to markets, counterfeit currency, bankruptcies, Internet schemes and a variety of complex frauds or breach of trust against government. Many investigators have business, finance, accounting and law backgrounds. A complex investigation involving fraudulent claims by a representative of a Regional Development Authority (RDA) to a provincial department for approximately $789,000 revealed that an employee of the RDA was personally benefiting from a portion of the funds. As a result of the investigation, the individual was arrested and charged in April 2016 with nine counts of Uttering Forged Documents and one count of Fraud. The matter is still before the courts.
Human trafficking and sexual exploitation – 'Say Something if you See Something'
Human trafficking and sexual exploitation can happen anywhere in Nova Scotia, often in places that people don't expect. To raise awareness about human trafficking, Halifax District RCMP and Halifax Regional Police introduced 'Say Something if you See Something', an education and awareness campaign to inform employees in the hospitality and transportation industry about how they can help prevent human trafficking and sexual exploitation by knowing what to look for.
The campaign is aimed at these specific industries because investigations reveal that victims are often taken to motels, hotels and luxury resorts by way of ground and air transportation. The victims are exploited by force, cohersion and intimidation. Victims are often afraid to come forward because of the trauma they experience at the hands of the people who are trafficking and exploiting them.
'Say Something if you See Something' was originally launched in the United Kingdom and includes posters and brochures. The campaign is aimed at local businesses within the community so that employees can become informed about what to look for and how they should respond if they believe human trafficking/sexual exploitation is occurring at their workplace. A simple observation or call can make a huge difference in the life of someone who is being sexually exploited or trafficked.
'Say Something if you See Something' was such a success throughout the Halifax region that in September 2016, the Nova Scotia Chiefs of Police offered their support for the campaign. This means that throughout 2017, 'Say Something if you See Something' will be shared with police agencies across Nova Scotia for use in their local communities.
Jade H. Brooks, a survivor of human trafficking had this to say…
"When I first saw the Say Something if You See Something campaign, I was very excited. Finally, someone gets it! This is a local issue and has been for some time now. I can say from personal experience that the warning signs of someone being trafficking listed in the brochure are extremely accurate. At the time that I was a victim of this crime, I was unable to recognize what I was going through. Maybe with this campaign, a victim could recognize her/his circumstances and find a way out."
Operational Support Services
Members of the Operational Support Services team are experts in their field and are ready to respond to situations unfolding across the province. From investigating major and serious crimes, to responding to high risk emergency situations and providing a range of specialized services and expertise, the RCMP demonstrates its capability as Nova Scotia's Provincial Police by utilizing these units to support public safety.
Teamwork, professionalism, advanced training and tactics - Emergency Response Team (ERT)
The Nova Scotia RCMP Emergency Response Team (ERT) is made up of six full-time members and 10 part-time members. These highly-trained RCMP members are capable of using specialized weapons, equipment, and tactics to resolve extremely high-risk situations. The potentially violent and often dynamic nature of these incidents requires a highly integrated and coordinated response. Throughout 2016 ERT was responsible for 42 deployments and calls for assistance throughout the province.
Training is a critical component of being on ERT. Members attend 40 hours of training each month in addition to specialized training involving marine and aircraft intervention, sniper and rappel training. In 2016, ERT received training in explosive forced entry which enhances their ability to respond to critical incidents in Nova Scotia.
National Sex Offender Registry
The National Sex Offender Registry (NSOR) was established as a result of the Sex Offender Information Registration Act (SOIRA), which was proclaimed as law in 2004. The SOIRA mandates that sex offenders who have been convicted of specific sexual offences will be given a SOIRA Order from the court. They then must report to police annually and provide up-to-date information which pertains to their addresses, telephone numbers, vehicles, and appearances. This information is then entered into the National Sex Offender Registry Database and is available to accredited Canadian and International law enforcement agencies. Depending on the nature and number of offences, the reporting duration will be for a period of 10 years, 20 years or life. This tool allows the Nova Scotia RCMP to maintain up-to-date personal information on sex offenders to ensure they are abiding by their conditions. Ultimately, it's about protecting victims.
Truth Verification Section
The Nova Scotia RCMP Truth Verification Section (TVS) supports criminal investigations by conducting Forensic Polygraph Examinations, Investigative Statement Analysis, and completing interviews with witnesses and suspects. This type of assistance is provided to all RCMP detachments, investigative sections and our municipal policing partners across the province.
Throughout 2016 TVS received close to 140 requests for assistance from the RCMP and police agencies across the province and were successful obtaining truthful disclosures on serious criminal investigations including homicide and sexual assault investigations. As well, a total of 230 polygraph examinations in support of criminal investigations and pre-employment polygraph examinations for the RCMP National Recruiting Centre were completed.
The Nova Scotia RCMP Truth Verification Section has been part of a team of experts from across the country that developed the RCMP Phased Suspect Interview Model. This new model for interviewing is designed to be adaptive in its pursuit of the truth, while being respectful of Canadian law and an individual's human rights and freedoms. In 2016, TVS successfully provided training on this new model to investigators within Nova Scotia and will continue this training in 2017.
Determining what happened - Collision Analysis and Reconstruction Services (CARS)
The Nova Scotia RCMP Collision Analysis and Reconstruction Services (CARS) is a highly trained team of investigators who go to the scene of collisions where there are deaths and serious injuries. They assist the investigation by identifying, collecting and interpreting the physical evidence found at scenes to determine the cause of the collision. Throughout 2016 the team assisted with 99 investigations, often working in partnership with the Nova Scotia Department of Transportation and Infrastructure Renewal (TIR).
When not at the scene of a collision, CARS experts are providing collision investigation training to the frontline and delivering presentations to police, fire and ambulance personnel on how to manage and maintain a collision scene to protect the integrity of the evidence.
911, what's your emergency?
The Nova Scotia RCMP Operational Communication Centre (OCC) is often the first point of contact between Nova Scotians involved in emergency situations and the RCMP. Highly trained communication operators answer more than 230,000 calls for service each year through 911 or RCMP emergency lines.
The RCMP OCC dispatches members from 39 detachments throughout the province (not including detachments in Halifax). Monitoring and updating RCMP members on the road is a critical safety component of OCC operations. This involves nearly 6,000 radio and computer transactions per day between operators and police officers in the field. OCC operators are on duty 24/7 and are equipped with the latest computer and radio technology, enabling a quick response to any emergency situation. They facilitate response between police, fire, and ambulance services, as well as specialized emergency responder units throughout Nova Scotia. The OCC has Risk Managers who monitor every call that comes in to the OCC to provide operational support, supervision, guidance and oversight to members on the frontline.
Investigating Major Crimes
The Nova Scotia RCMP Major Crimes Unit (MCU) is responsible for all investigations of murders, attempted murders, abductions, missing persons, historical homicides, found human remains and other complex criminal investigations. MCU investigators are experts in interviewing, interrogation, obtaining judicial authorizations, suspicious death investigations and management of major cases.
They often work around the clock, in challenging environmental conditions, where they review facts and gather evidence to bring those responsible before the courts and provide answers to victims' loved ones. To do this, they often partner with other RCMP units and police agencies throughout the province.
In December, Cape Breton Regional Police charged a man for the murder of Harold "Buster" Slaunwhite who was found deceased in his Dominion, Cape Breton home in 1996. Cape Breton Regional Police began a lengthy investigation with assistance from the Nova Scotia RCMP Northeast Nova Major Crimes Unit. Through teamwork, cooperation and sharing of resources, MCU played a critical role in this investigation that ultimately led to charging the man believed to be responsible. This matter is currently before the courts.
In 2012, Victoria Brauns-Buckley was found deceased in her Chester Basin home. Three days later, police arrested and charged 22-year-old John "Jack" Buckley of Chester, with Second Degree Murder. The charges were later withdrawn citing a low likelihood of conviction but the investigation remained active. Over the next four years, the Southwest Nova Major Crimes Unit continued gathering evidence and used RCMP officers from across Canada to assist with their investigation. On April 8, 2016, investigators arrested Buckley again, this time charging him with First Degree Murder and a trial was set for March 2017.
Internet Child Exploitation Unit (ICE) – protecting children from predators
The Nova Scotia RCMP Internet Child Exploitation Unit (ICE) works to protect children from child pornography and exploitation. Using specialized computer techniques and tools to target offenders, investigators assess a suspect's risk to offend, write search warrants and bring offenders before the courts.
As Nova Scotia's provincial unit, the RCMP ICE Unit provides assistance and expertise to all municipal police agencies in Nova Scotia in any child pornography or exploitation file. To obtain this expertise, ICE investigators are trained with advanced techniques so they can communicate effectively online and collect evidence to track activities of those sexually exploiting children through websites, chat rooms and Peer-to-Peer trading.
The ICE Unit conducts proactive investigations and receives information from local, national and international sources, including: the Federal Bureau of Investigations (FBI), Cybertip.ca, the National Child Exploitation Coordination Centre, National Center for Missing & Exploited Children, Kids Help Phone and Crime Stoppers.
With this information, the Unit has been able to successfully track, arrest and charge a number of people. For example, an ICE investigator was able to take over a child's social media account and within 90 seconds, obtain the offender's physical location and capture him in the act of committing an offense. That individual was from Dover, England. The ICE Unit sent their information to Kent Police in the United Kingdom and as a result, the offender was arrested and sentenced to 12 years in prison.
During another investigation, ICE discovered an offender using a neighbour's wireless Internet connection to download and access child pornography. A 33-year-old man from Pubnico was arrested and charged and the investigation is ongoing.
The RCMP believes that the best defense against child pornography and exploitation is educating people to minimize the risk of becoming a victim. They achieve this through presentations to police officers, youth, parents, government officials and social workers.
Forensic Identification Services
The recovery and analysis of forensic evidence is a critical element of investigations. The Nova Scotia RCMP Forensic Identification Services (FIS) responds to crime scenes across Nova Scotia to locate, collect, preserve and analyze all evidence in an effort to link suspects to a crime.
When they arrive at a crime scene, forensic investigators photograph all exhibits before they are moved. They use specialized forensic light sources, including laser search for trace evidence such as DNA (blood, saliva, hairs), fibers, fingerprints, tire tracks or footwear impressions.
The Nova Scotia RCMP has FIS teams located in Northeast Nova, Southwest Nova and Halifax District. In 2016, the FIS in Bible Hill moved into a state-of-the-art work space with a large, bright space that has specific areas for specialized examinations such as Forensic Light Examination or detailed trace evidence examination.
During 2016, FIS provided assistance to a wide range of investigations, from property crimes to complex homicides. In many instances, their work gave investigators crucial information that led to solving crimes throughout Nova Scotia.
Connecting with our diverse communities
Community, Aboriginal & Diversity Policing Services (CADPS) connects the Nova Scotia RCMP with our Aboriginal, African Nova Scotian, immigrant and newcomer communities. These connections foster relationships, build trust and allow for important community and cultural information to be exchanged. This helps the RCMP better understand the communities we serve, and keep Nova Scotians safe by reducing potential criminal activity.
To increase employee awareness about diversity, cultural competency training is offered on African Nova Scotian history and Aboriginal perceptions. As well, throughout 2016 a number of frontline officers were trained on ways to assist Syrian refugees. To do this, the Nova Scotia RCMP worked alongside Immigrant Services Association of Nova Scotia (ISANS) and the Immigration and Refugee Board (IRCC). These partnerships and training opportunities ensure newcomers are able to live safely among their new communities.
CADPS is also the RCMP liaison with a variety of community organizations and plays an important role in moving initiatives ahead. Some examples include partnering with the Nova Scotia Department of Justice, the Mi'kmaq Legal Support Network and Justice Canada to promote Restorative Justice in Nova Scotia. Another partnership involved working with the Status of Women on Engaging Men and Boys in Ending Violence Against Women, a project delivered by Chrysalis House and Juniper House with a goal to provide men and boys with the tools to be effective interveners.
CADPS also provides the tools necessary for our 34 School Safety Resource Officers, Crime Prevention Officers and Youth Officers to educate youth, seniors and other community members about crime prevention. CADPS creates presentations and workshops on a variety of topics related to cybercrime, human trafficking, drug trends and healthy relationships. In doing this, CADPS ensures that every community we serve has access to the most relevant, up-to-date information.
Underwater Recovery Team
The Nova Scotia RCMP Underwater Recovery Team (URT) is a team of highly skilled divers. These police officers are trained investigators with an ability to conduct investigations under water. The job is physically and mentally demanding as they work year round, in challenging weather conditions and often in remote locations.
The Underwater Recovery Team travels across Canada for various duties. These include VIP events which require URT divers to inspect ships and piers for special events such as Royal visits, Olympics and G7/G8 Summits. Nova Scotia URT assists the Emergency Response Team when rescue divers are required during marine operations. They assist with major incidents such as plane crashes or sunken vessels, as well as help other agencies such as Canada Border Services Agency in searching the hulls of ships for contraband.
Tragically, search and recovery of missing persons or those who have drowned is the number one call for URT. The circumstances are often highly emotional with family members watching nearby as URT divers search for peoples' loved ones in accidental drownings, or when someone has chosen to end their own life. The divers are also used in investigations to search for weapons, explosive devices and stolen property.
In 2016 URT responded to 12 requests for service including searches for missing people and evidence. As well, the team assisted other Underwater Recovery Teams outside the province and participated in numerous school talks, career fairs and presentations.
Nova Scotia's URT has one full-time lead, six part-time members (including one Halifax Regional Police member) who do this in addition to their normal duties and one reservist. In order to maintain their underwater investigative skills they train throughout the year in an effort to continuously upgrade their skills.
RCMP's eyes in the sky
As your Provincial Police, the Nova Scotia RCMP has the tools, training and abilities to conduct patrols and investigations in a variety of environments. Depending on where you live in the province, you've likely come across members on snowmobiles, ATVs, bicycles, or boats. What you may not have realized is that our members also have the ability to act as eyes in the sky.
Atlantic Region Air Services provides the RCMP throughout Atlantic Canada with airborne law enforcement and transportation. Based out of New Brunswick, the fleet consists of an Airbus helicopter and a Pilatus airplane that members can activate quickly, making them an invaluable tool for police investigations when timing is critical.
As well, Nova Scotia RCMP has access to Remotely Piloted Aircraft Systems (RPAS), commonly referred to as drones. RPAS are a small unmanned aircraft piloted by a trained officer. The RPAS have a live feed and may record video and/or still photography.
With the ability to become airborne, our investigators are given a unique vantage point to assist in a variety of investigations. In Nova Scotia, Air Services and the RPAS have allowed members to find missing persons, locate stolen property, assist with coastal patrols, effectively document vehicle collisions and major crime scenes, provide tactical support, monitor large scale events, and transport high risk offenders.
Forensic art specialists put a name to the face
RCMP forensic art specialists use limited information to sculpt faces from bone fragments and translate details from witness interviews into sketches. They provide their expertise as another tool for RCMP investigators, often recreating the faces of victims, missing people and suspects in a crime. The investigators will then use their creations to further their investigation and solicit information and tips from the public. "In 2016 I created a sketch related to a suspect wanted for a break-and-enter in Nova Scotia," says Cst. Alexandre L'Heureux, forensic art specialist for the Atlantic region. "The sketch resulted in the man being identified and subsequently arrested and charged."
Forensic art specialists gather information through interviews, photos and physical remains. They recreate faces through:
- Composite drawings sketched from interviews with victims and witnesses of crime to produce a physical representation of what is in someone's mind.
- Post Mortem drawings are based on physical remains. They show how someone looked when they were alive which helps the RCMP and Nova Scotia Medical Examiner's Office identify victims.
- Image modification shows how someone who went missing several years ago may look now. This helps the RCMP generate tips from the public.
- Two-and three-dimensional facial reconstruction show what someone looked like when they were alive. The artist casts molds of human remains and uses that information to sculpt physical features. This method is often used to identify the deceased for the Nova Scotia Medical Examiner's Office.
Administration and Personnel
The Administration and Personnel Office ensures that the Nova Scotia RCMP provides a modern, trustworthy and effective police service. It provides services related to departmental security, employee wellness, training, performance management, litigation and member conduct in order to provide employees with a safe and supportive work environment. The Administration and Personnel Office is also responsible for staffing RCMP personnel including Regular and Civilian members and Public Servants.
Commitment to health
Employees are the Nova Scotia RCMP's most valuable resource. As such, we are committed to doing all that we can as an employer to keep them coming to work happy, healthy and productive.
Policing is a dangerous profession, and employees are often exposed to stressful and traumatic situations. To ensure members have the necessary skills to do their job, a state-of the art training facility was opened in 2016. Proper training and equipment ensures members on the frontline are able to respond confidently and safely to any type of call.
Traditionally it has been part of policing culture not to talk about how the job is affecting you. However policing has dramatically changed, and as a modern police force the RCMP is striving to change that culture. An employee's mental health is just as important as their physical health and over the past number of years, the RCMP has put an increased emphasis on mental health. Employees now have access to a variety of programs in support of mental and physical health, and ultimately, work/life balance.
The RCMP has a robust Mental Health Strategy and in support of that strategy, the Division has put additional supports in place for the occupational health services team. This team is dedicated to assisting those with medical issues get back to work safely and as quickly as possible. Across the province our employees can also access the volunteer services of RCMP Chaplains, on call 24/7 or a variety of employee assistance programs for emotional support.
The goal of these training opportunities, supports and services is to keep our employees healthy and well equipped to provide the highest level of service to Nova Scotians.
So you want to be a Mountie!
Did you know that on May 1, 2016, RCMP qualifications and requirements changed to reduce processing times and improve recruiting policies and processes? The changes are meant to help the Force stay competitive and continue to build a diverse workforce that reflects the communities it serves.
- Permanent residents of Canada are now eligible to apply, provided they have lived in Canada for the last 10 years.
- Applicants with a minimum two-year college diploma from a recognized post-secondary institution are no longer required to write the RCMP Entrance Exam.
- To meet organizational needs, applicants from British Columbia, Alberta, Saskatchewan or Manitoba have the opportunity to select their home province for their first post following graduation. The RCMP's operational needs continue to determine the exact location of a posting.
- The organizational competencies previously assessed in the Regular Member Selection Interview (RMSI) will now be assessed at other interview and evaluation steps of the application process, and at the RCMP Training Academy in Regina.
- The Physical Abilities Requirement Evaluation (PARE) will now only be assessed at the RCMP Training Academy in Regina.
To make the process more accessible to prospective recruits in Cape Breton, the Nova Scotia RCMP also began offering entrance tests closer to home this year. A regional testing site was established at the Port Hawkesbury RCMP detachment and the first test was administered in August.
A smarter way to police
The RCMP has developed a computer simulation called Police Resourcing Methodology (PRM) that provides in-depth analysis of current workload, calls for service and human resource requirements to meet the demands on employees in detachments. To do this, the PRM uses historical RCMP databases and detachment-specific data to predict the types of calls for service expected within a detachment. It also takes into consideration the associated response, including initial investigation, follow-up, court and disposition activities by frontline members. This information then helps the RCMP and contract holders strategically allocate resources required at any given detachment in the province in order to provide effective, efficient policing.
RCMP Training Centre opens
In May 2016, the Nova Scotia RCMP Training Centre opened its doors. This state-of-the art training centre is a purpose-built facility designed specifically for RCMP training.
The facility provides Nova Scotia RCMP the opportunity to deliver interactive, hands-on, scenario-based training in an environment that is safe and secure for our police officers. Some of the training includes how to react to immediate, active threats that might be found in a school shooting situation, high-risk vehicle traffic stops and operational skills training such as arrest protocol. Over 600 of our members in Nova Scotia will receive training in this facility throughout 2017.
The facility is located in Dartmouth which was strategically chosen given it is within 100 kilometres of 60% of employees and minutes away from the Nova Scotia RCMP Headquarters building. The facility is home to a fully functional interactive classroom, washroom/shower facilities, a large gymnasium, a training area for vehicle stops, and a simulated school/office training floor for scenarios.
As Nova Scotia's Provincial Police, we are extremely proud of our Training Centre which contributes to our first-class training abilities to enhance officer and public safety.
Thank you for your kind words...
The men and women of the RCMP have the privilege of serving the people of Nova Scotia. What makes this job even more rewarding is when we reflect on the comments and feedback from you, our citizens.
Connecting with youth in the community in as many ways as possible is an important part of what you do. I just want to tell you how well you do it! You engaged the students, had great visual displays and gave them a meaningful experience. Every once in a while I feel fortunate to encounter someone who is simply an outstanding person in what they do and how they do it. Cst. David Fairfax, you are one of those rare people and I feel fortunate to have met you and seen you in action.
I want to extend my gratitude to the 18 men and women from the New Minas and area RCMP who kept my family calm and safe this afternoon. Much of the media is pegging police as bad cops but bad cops did not help my mother and brother remain calm and protected today, good police officers did, police officers that I am praying for. Thank you.
This fall I was involved in an episode with a mentally ill man. Constable Wile, of Sheet Harbour demonstrated commendable professionalism and leadership in this difficult situation. I am very impressed by his abilities to resolve a difficult matter.
I just wanted to extend my sincere thanks to you and your team for your efforts in keeping last night's event safe.Thank you for all you do, I'm sure we don't say it enough but we all appreciate your efforts.
after a number of years our RCMP detachment is alive...with outdoor music lots of red and blue lights flashing......What a wonderful sight to see.... Hats off to the person(s) responsible....and thank you!
I was so scared up on that mountain. Definitely a place we shouldn't have been at this particular time. Thank you to the RCMP for getting us out! It was nine hours in total on the mountain, and a few hours before we were able to call for help. If it wasn't for the police officers I don't know what the outcome would have been. I would like to thank all that assisted us in getting out safe and sound, especially to the two police officers who came by snowmobile. God was on our side that day!
I would just like to thank the RCMP for their quick response to the incident that happened at Millwood High School in Middle Sackville yesterday. When I received the call from the school that it was in lock down my heart sank - thinking the worst. My youngest son goes there but he called me and said not to worry because the RCMP are here on site. Once again I can't thank you enough for the fine job and the service you provide to our community in Millwood, Middle Sackville.
I want to thank you all so much for the quick response and action to prevent a horrific thing happening to one of our schools. My son is in Millwood elementary and it was a scary moment for us when I got the call at work. But the heavy quick presence of your detachment make us all feel safe in Sackville. You guys and gals do such a great job, I wouldn't want any other police force tasked for Sackville. Thank you again for keeping my family safe.
I would like to thank all of you for the work that you do. I realize that there are a lot of people that don't appreciate what you do. With that being said, there are a lot of us that do. My sincere thanks. Be safe.
I wanted to be a Mountie ever since I was quite small (maybe grade one) and a young - and now I realize just *how* young. Mountie came to our class in one of those relationship sort of exercises, where one attempts to connect with kids and show them that the police are not scary, etc. He was very patient with 15-20 very excited little boys who wanted to know all about his gun, cuffs, etc., and who kept interrupting a great deal. Love, prayers and the support in spades.
In light of yesterday being the National Day of Remembrance for Road Crash Victims, I wanted to express to you all and in particularly your colleagues in the Antigonish/Monastery detachment a sincere and heartfelt thank you. My older brother and best friend died in 2015 as the result of a head on collision with a tractor trailer. My brother was a remarkable man who in his own way served so many of us making this world a better place. His loss was felt by many. His funeral was the largest I have ever witnessed. We appreciate so much that you were there for him on the site, that he was not alone, and that you were desperately working to save him. It may sound a little odd to you, but you guys were with a true guardian angel that day as he was beginning his journey home. I hope each day when you go to work on the good days and the darker ones how much you are appreciated. God Bless.
I read about the arrests you make on a regular basis and I wanted to let you know that I appreciate all the work all officers do every day and night. I am grateful to all of you! Thank you so much for making our province a safer one to live in.
The RCMP is hiring!
Did you know there are more than 150 different types of operational and administrative opportunities within the RCMP?
The Royal Canadian Mounted Police offers meaningful work, vast opportunities, the chance to serve across Canada and a career like no other. RCMP officers play an important role in ensuring the safety and security of those in the communities they serve. Responsible for enforcing the law and investigating the crime, our officers are role models and leaders who provide advice and guidance to people from all walks of life. If you want to make a difference in your community and your country, this is a career to consider.
The RCMP is looking for people who are responsible, respectful, professional, compassionate, honest and who have integrity. Once training is successfully complete, a new member will be posted to one of our 750 detachments across Canada.
For more information on a career with the RCMP and basic requirements, visit our website at RCMP Careers where you will also find information on career presentations.
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© 2017 HER MAJESTY THE QUEEN IN RIGHT OF CANADA as represented by the Royal Canadian Mounted Police.
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