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Calgary police patrol rifle stolen from an off-duty officer’s private vehicle

Blackadder1916

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This has been an interesting story out this way for the last couple of days.

http://calgaryherald.com/news/crime/police-patrol-rifle-stolen-in-northwest-calgary-car-prowling
Police superintendent 'sick to my stomach' over stolen assault rifle

Clara Ho, Calgary Herald
Published on: April 6, 2015
Last Updated: April 6, 2015 6:51 AM MDT

A city police officer will be suspended with pay after a patrol rifle was stolen from his private vehicle Saturday night, sparking a criminal investigation and internal probe with oversight from Alberta’s police watchdog.

The off-duty officer was heading home from work when he apparently stopped into a restaurant on Crowfoot Terrace N.W. at Crowfoot Crossing just before midnight.

When he returned to his personal vehicle in the parking lot, he realized someone had broken into the Subaru and made off with a hardcover case containing a police-issue Colt C8 rifle — which the officer was taking home to clean — and two magazines containing 28 rounds each.

The case was locked but apparently improperly tethered to the vehicle, said Supt. Kevan Stuart, adding it would not be difficult to break open the case “if somebody is motivated.”

Sources have confirmed the officer is Const. Stephen Baker.

Investigators are now looking for CCTV footage and trying to determine if other nearby vehicles were also broken into. At this time, police have not received any reports of other vehicle break-in thefts in the area, prompting investigators to look into whether the officer’s Subaru was targeted.

“Sick to my stomach,” said Stuart, when asked how he felt upon learning about the incident. “There is no reason, in my mind, why an officer would take this firearm home.”

The case has sparked a criminal investigation into the storage of the firearm, as well as an internal investigation with the professional standards section to determine whether any policies and procedures were breached, which the Alberta Serious Incident Response Team (ASIRT) is overseeing.

Stuart said he was also made aware of allegations on social media about police canvassing vehicles in the area in a bid to search for clues in the case, which could potentially spark a separate professional standards investigation.

The officer, a three-year member with the Calgary Police Service, is being suspended with pay.

“If our investigation determines there is any Criminal Code breaches that put the public safety and officers’ safety (at risk), this officer’s career is in huge jeopardy,” Stuart said. “We hold our officers to a very high standard, and this will be an extensive investigation.”

He said it’s not uncommon for police officers to bring their handguns home, especially after a night shift, with court duties to follow the next morning. But he stressed that every officer is subject to the same rules and laws as Canadian citizens in regards to the safe storage of firearms.

Overall, he prefers that officers keep their guns at the office.

“I’m going to say that right out, and I know that’s going to create some controversy: we do not want our officers taking their firearms home. There’s nothing good that can come of that,” Stuart said.

If left in the wrong hands, the rifle could cause “significant damage,” which is why investigators are leaving “no stone unturned” in their search for the firearm, he added.

westwinds5.jpg

The Calgary Police Service displays a police-issue Colt C8 rifle in its case similar to one that was stolen from an off-duty officer’s private vehicle on Saturday, April 4, 2015 from a northwest parking lot.
 

Kat Stevens

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IF THE INVESTIGATION WARRANTS IT I hope a very large, very heavy book gets thrown at this doofus.
 
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jollyjacktar

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Here too, last week.  :facepalm:

http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/nova-scotia/rcmp-service-pistol-stolen-from-vehicle-in-downtown-halifax-1.3016335
 

MilEME09

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I love how in the calgary story the officer in question apparently said he wanted to take it home to clean, yet he signed out two full magazines......cleaning, right......
 

Fishbone Jones

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Before it turns into the usual chest thumping stuff, let's watch the disparaging remarks.

LEOs are people too. Before we get down on the professional thing, lots of service weapons have disappeared also.

Lots of civilian weapons disappear regularly and not everyone goes to jail because of it.

Everyone, including LEOs and Military should be held to at least the same standard, with no favoritism.

That standard also extends, at least in Canada, that you are presumed innocent until the judge's gavel falls.

Let's all remember that before we start speculating and going off half cocked.

---Staff---
 

Dissident

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Why do we insist on hammering on the victim?

I hope that due care was taken when he left his vehicle unattended, but right now we don't have any indication of where the case was stored, what kind of vehicle it was or any other pertinent details. Someone from CPS told me it looks bad on the member, so maybe there are cause for concern, but its all conjectures at this point.

And so what if he took the rifle home with 2 loaded mags? That is likely how the rifle is issued. Even so, I would commend him if he was planing on going to practice on his own, not hammer him for the initiative.
 

Tibbson

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NinerSix said:
Why do we insist on hammering on the victim?

I hope that due care was taken when he left his vehicle unattended, but right now we don't have any indication of where the case was stored, what kind of vehicle it was or any other pertinent details. Someone from CPS told me it looks bad on the member, so maybe there are cause for concern, but its all conjectures at this point.

And so what if he took the rifle home with 2 loaded mags? That is likely how the rifle is issued. Even so, I would commend him if he was planing on going to practice on his own, not hammer him for the initiative.

The bigger issue is that by taking the initiative he was in violation of a number of departmental regs and potentially laws.  The jails are full of people who claim to have had good intentions and initiative. 
 

MilEME09

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Schindler's Lift said:
The bigger issue is that by taking the initiative he was in violation of a number of departmental regs and potentially laws.  The jails are full of people who claim to have had good intentions and initiative.

We don't know that for sure, CPS does allow members to take weapons home. The devil is in the details here, one thing that's come up is if the case the C8 was in was properly tethered to the vehicle. If it was still tethered but not properly then its not a regulation violation. If they weren't used at all then it is, that said the firearms community in calgary is very proactive and if someone tries to sell this to a legal firearms dealer or owner it would be found rather quickly.
 

RedcapCrusader

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NinerSix said:
Why do we insist on hammering on the victim?

I hope that due care was taken when he left his vehicle unattended, but right now we don't have any indication of where the case was stored, what kind of vehicle it was or any other pertinent details. Someone from CPS told me it looks bad on the member, so maybe there are cause for concern, but its all conjectures at this point.

And so what if he took the rifle home with 2 loaded mags? That is likely how the rifle is issued. Even so, I would commend him if he was planing on going to practice on his own, not hammer him for the initiative.

Departmental policy is that the rifle is not to be taken home, or transported while off duty and in a personal vehicle for any reason. When transported in a vehicle, it is to be secured to the vehicle via the cable locks in the trunk. Otherwise it is supposed to be secured to the mount in the cab of the service vehicle for quick deployment. Not simply locked in a case sitting in the back seat of a personal vehicle no less.

Members are not to remove service rifles from any department office or building for purposes other than duty or training (approved training conducted as a group under proper supervision at an approved site, personal training can take place at their indoor range).

The department has weapons technicians/gunsmiths that are responsible for cleaning and maintenance of issued service weapons.

MilEME09 said:
I love how in the calgary story the officer in question apparently said he wanted to take it home to clean, yet he signed out two full magazines......cleaning, right......

Signing out a C8, the case is issued from the vault with ammunition.

The officer in question should have just gone straight home and then went for his meal.

MilEME09 said:
We don't know that for sure, CPS does allow members to take weapons home. The devil is in the details here, one thing that's come up is if the case the C8 was in was properly tethered to the vehicle. If it was still tethered but not properly then its not a regulation violation. If they weren't used at all then it is, that said the firearms community in calgary is very proactive and if someone tries to sell this to a legal firearms dealer or owner it would be found rather quickly.

SOME officers take their service pistol home, however it is departmental policy that rifles are not to leave a department office or building for any reason as explained above. The Service also prefers that officers leave their pistols locked at the office as well, however should they, they are subjected to the same transport and storage laws as the rest of us.
 

Kat Stevens

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RedcapCrusader said:
Departmental policy is that the rifle is not to be taken home, or transported while off duty and in a personal vehicle for any reason. When transported in a vehicle, it is to be secured to the vehicle via the cable locks in the trunk. Otherwise it is supposed to be secured to the mount in the cab of the service vehicle for quick deployment. Not simply locked in a case sitting in the back seat of a personal vehicle no less.

Members are not to remove service rifles from any department office or building for purposes other than duty or training (approved training conducted as a group under proper supervision at an approved site, personal training can take place at their indoor range).


Thanks for clearing that up.
The department has weapons technicians/gunsmiths that are responsible for cleaning and maintenance of issued service weapons.

Signing out a C8, the case is issued from the vault with ammunition.

The officer in question should have just gone straight home and then went for his meal.

SOME officers take their service pistol home, however it is departmental policy that rifles are not to leave a department office or building for any reason as explained above. The Service also prefers that officers leave their pistols locked at the office as well, however should they, they are subjected to the same transport and storage laws as the rest of us.
 

kratz

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It's been 13 days, but the rifle has been recovered, according to CBC.ca
 

Oldgateboatdriver

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Recovery of the riffle would lead me to believe that the thief was not specifically after the gun … and decided to dump it somewhere after he realized what he had on his hands, the commotion it stirred and the trouble he would be in if he was found in possession of something that hot.
 

Kat Stevens

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Cool how when the police lose it, it's just a "patrol rifle", but it if got stolen from my car it would be a "semi automatic assault rifle capable of spewing lead death at a high rate of fire".    ;D
 

Alberta Bound

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Kat S

I believe it is called "spin". something the boss does when he realizes that someone "probably" just screwed the pooch and the whole world is going to know about it.

AB
 
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jollyjacktar

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I'll just bet his boss was spinning at the news.  Glad they recovered it.  No news on the missing S&W pistol stolen from the NB member this way.
 

Fishbone Jones

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jollyjacktar said:
I'll just bet his boss was spinning at the news.  Glad they recovered it.  No news on the missing S&W pistol stolen from the NB member this way.

Slightly dated, but the same happens yearly, give or take.http://www.canada.com/vancouversun/news/westcoastnews/story.html?id=0cf469f3-9f66-49ea-ab41-1d158cb338df



428 police guns lost or stolen, firearms group

By Vancouver Sun September 30, 2011 

A group opposing Canada's firearms registry says it has discovered that 428 guns have gone missing from police forces or other public agencies.

And Canada's National Firearms Association, which obtained the figure through an access-to-information request, said it suggests police are part of the problem of guns falling into the hands of gangsters and other criminals.

"It seems to me there is a little bit of a double standard here," NFA president Sheldon Clare of Prince George said Thursday.

He said police like to point out that guns owned by lawabiding citizens can end up in the wrong hands if they are stored improperly.

But he suggested police should be asking themselves how many of their own guns have ended up being used in crimes.

"Police loss of firearms are hushed up," he said.

The NFA says its access request resulted in the RCMP revealing that 32 guns have been lost or stolen from members of Canada's national police force, 316 guns were lost or stolen from other police forces and another 80 were lost or stolen from other public agencies, not including the military.

He said no time frame was given in the response to the access request, but it appears to date from October 2008, when the Police and Public Agency Regulations came into force. The regulations required all police firearms to be registered with the RCMP by Oct. 31, 2009.

Clare said his organization opposes Canada's national gun registry, which he suggested has only registered half of the 20 million guns in Canada since it was introduced in the 1990s.

He said the registry hasn't prevented guns from being used in crimes or tragic mass murders.

"The problem we seem to have is how to stop bad people from having dangerous things," Clare said.

It's time for police to stop treating law-abiding gun owners as part of the problem and instead focus on catching the real bad guys, he said.

© (c) CanWest MediaWorks Publications Inc.
 

Blackadder1916

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The consequences (for the public - the constable's still to be determined) of this incident are still unfolding.


http://calgaryherald.com/news/crime/police-notifying-hundreds-of-people-about-potential-privacy-breach
Police notifying hundreds of people about potential privacy breach

Reid Southwick, Calgary Herald
Published on: May 11, 2015
Last Updated: May 11, 2015 7:57 PM MDT

Calgary police are notifying up to 400 people that their privacy may have been breached after five service-issued notebooks were stolen from an off-duty officer’s vehicle.

The notebooks were inside the same vehicle from which a police-issued rifle and ammunition were stolen April 4. The rifle and pair of magazines with 28 rounds each were later recovered, but police made no mention of the missing notebooks until Monday, more than five weeks after the initial theft.

The stolen notebooks, which the patrol officer used to record car accidents, thefts and other incidents, could contain dates of birth, home addresses and driver’s licence numbers, among other personal information of people the officer interviewed.

Police spokesman Kevin Brookwell told reporters that officers did not immediately disclose the theft of the notebooks in order to assist the investigation. He noted police often control the amount of evidence that is made public to avoid tipping off potential suspects or people who know more about the crimes.

“As it turned out, these notebooks played a major role in us being able to recover the rifle,” Brookwell said, later declining to explain exactly how they helped.

Police have not identified any suspects or laid any charges.

About 350 to 400 people who had contact with the officer and whose information may have been breached will receive a letter from police in the coming weeks, telling them what happened. Police are urging them to monitor their credit reports, mail and banking statements for evidence of identity theft and fraud.

Investigators have also notified the provincial privacy commissioner’s office about the potential breach.

Brookwell said it has taken this long to notify affected Calgarians — more than five weeks after the notebooks were stolen — because officers had to sift through other police records to come up with a list of people whose information likely appeared in the notepads.

The officer used these paper notebooks, not to be confused with laptop computers of the same name, from November 2013 to October 2014.

​Officers are required to keep notebooks stored under lock and key for up to five years after any given incident, and they often take them home when they have court cases coming up.

Brookwell said police are investigating why this officer had five notebooks with him.

The officer, identified by sources as Const. Stephen Baker, had left a police-issued firearm and the five notebooks in his personal vehicle the night of April 4 when he stopped into Schanks Sports Bar on Crowfoot Terrace N.W.

By the time that he returned, a hardcover case containing the Colt C8 rifle, which he was taking home to clean, along with the notebooks and two magazines containing 28 rounds each, had been stolen.

Nearly two weeks later, police said they had recovered the rifle and magazines.

Brookwell said police have also found the case, but the notebooks remain missing.

“The fact is, we don’t know where they are,” he said. “They could be gone. They could be long gone.”

Baker has been suspended with pay. The officer is not expected to face criminal charges as a result of the missing notebooks, though Crown counsel in Edmonton is expected to review the investigation into Baker’s handling and storage of the firearm, and charges could be laid.

So far, police have received no reports of privacy breaches and do not believe any court case has been jeopardized as a result of the notebooks being stolen.

Still, Brookwell said the theft had wider implications.

“There is no question that this incident has, I think, really impacted the trust and confidence that the public has in us,” he said, “and it’s going to take some time to get that back.”


 

Jarnhamar

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Weird case with weird circumstances.  I've read the police "randomly" found the stolen firearm in an apartment, doesn't really pass the sniff test. Especially with no one being charged.

And the officer had not one but 5 notebooks in his vehicle?
 
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