Friday March 22, 1991


A disturbing case


Last May, a Metro police sergeant pleaded guilty before an internal tribunal to Police Act charges of corruption and deceit.

The tribunal found that Sgt. Brian Whitehead had had sex with a woman who complied because she feared if she didn't "she would be arrested."

In passing sentence, Supt. Duncan Wilson said: "In my two years as tribunal officer, I have never had a case which depicts so vividly the abuse of power and position of a police officer."

Yet rather than dismiss Whitehead on the spot, he demoted him from sergeant to first-class constable, at a loss in pay of about $7,000 a year.

The case has other disturbing aspects. The victim has alleged that Metro's Internal Affairs office discouraged her from pursuing her complaint. She also said a crown attorney, without hearing her story directly, found no grounds for criminal charges.

Fortunatly, the Ontario Police Commission is investigating the handling of Metro Police misconduct cases. It should add this one to the list.

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Created: December 4, 1998
Last modified: December 4, 1998

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