Kamloops RCMP superintendent calls officer health 'most important thing' after year of serious and violent crime - InfoNews

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Kamloops RCMP superintendent calls officer health 'most important thing' after year of serious and violent crime

FILE PHOTO -Kamloops RCMP Supt. Syd Lecky addresses reporters for the first time on July 13, 2018.
March 06, 2019 - 11:50 AM

KAMLOOPS - Major crime, weapon seizures, an internal investigation, more mischief and crimes against property, but less drug violations — just another year for Kamloops RCMP.

Kamloops city council heard Supt. Syd Lecky present a mix bag of stats in the RCMP's 2018 year in review at the regular meeting yesterday, March 5.

One of the brighter notes was Kamloops drug violations went down 30 per cent last year in part due to cannabis legalization, Lecky says.

However the city is facing some real issues with targeted violence in the drug trade, and people still dying in their homes from fentanyl overdose.

The city's top cop discussed these and some of the more serious crimes that happened last year.

Lecky also talked about officer health and wellness, which he says is, "probably the most important thing to me and to our organization as a whole."

MAJOR POLICE INVESTIGATIONS AROUND TARGETED DRUG VIOLENCE

Four major investigations came up in the presentation. Three of them had to do with targeted violence in the drug trade.

"The most significant (investigation) has been the murder of Troy Gold," Lecky says. "This investigation remains active."

Troy Gold was a missing person who police later said was murdered in October, 2018. Gold had a history of violence and was convicted of murdering a man on a Penticton beach in 2001. In November police told reporters his murder is connected to the drug trade.

Lecky also says a home invasion on Badger Drive in January, where the victims did not cooperate with police, involved a number of people who are connected to the elicit drug trade.

Then in July a man was stabbed multiple times on a Kamloops beach. A person in the drug trade was investigated in relation to this incident, Lecky says.

The last major investigation mentioned in the report included the officer involved shooting in the Rose Hill subdivision.

OFFICER HEALTH AND WELLNESS

The Independent Investigations Office launched an investigation in response to the Rose Hill incident in September 2018 where a man died after an exchange of gunfire with police.

Lecky says incidents like this have an impact on officer morale, especially given the significance of the event.

"We are very fortunate in Kamloops that we just have access to health care," he says. "It is ultimately having an effect."

He also says, "the news is not all bad." Last year the detachment was able to maintain the maximum of 136 officers, and operate at full or slightly below capacity. They also welcomed 18 new recruits.


To contact a reporter for this story, email Shelby Thevenot or call (250) 819-6089 or email the editor You can also submit photos, videos or news tips to the newsroom and be entered to win a monthly prize draw.

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