Posted on Jan 24, 2023
When a person was poised to jump off the Alex Fraser Bridge on January 23rd, one of the first Delta Police Department members on the scene, trying to talk him out of his suicide intent, had a body cam which streamed to a fellow officer, who specializes in negotiating in volatile situations and was en route in a vehicle and who advised his colleague what to say and do until he arrived on the scene. That was one example of the value of a body cam. Delta Police Department is the first police force in BC to use body cams. Delta Police Chief Constable Neil Dubord and seven police officers, including a sniffer dog, were on hand the next day to present some of the ways the Delta Police Department serves the community.
Chief Neil Dubord spoke about Delta Police Department services to Tsawwassen First Nation, holding aloft a pin designed by a member of TFN, blending the Nation's "brand" and that of Delta Police.
The original purpose of a body cam for police was officer safety, said Sergeant Jim Ingram. Other benefits have proven to be recording of evidence in crime investigation, de-escalating volatile, negative behaviour when a person is advised that they are being recorded and building public trust.
Those in the traffic division have been equipped with body cams and soon those on patrol will have them. Other police departments in the province will be looking to Delta's experience.
The Delta Police Youth Action Team covers the needs of students at Delta's eight high schools and 28 elementary schools, according to Jessy Sahota and Gurleen Kalkat. It also runs the community-based YoBroYoGirl program of support services and activities for young people. The aim of the police youth program is not to punish troubled youth, rather it is to listen and provide guidance in keeping with the Adverse Childhood Experience system. The police youth team is working on a "Youth Hub" in the community to integrate appropriate support services for those in need.
Remy is one of two sniffer dogs working in the Delta Police Department detecting drugs and firearms. His partner, Sunny Gahunia, and Remy often work together when a suspicious vehicle is stopped to detect any suspect contents. Remy serves to detect rather than the fulfill dual purpose of detect and hunt/aprehend of some police dogs.
Chris Offer (centre) and President Guillermo Bustos (right) thank Chief Dubord and the eight Delta Police members who presented to Ladner Rotary