Justice Thomas Braidwood has warned that he may consider finding that the four RCMP "acted improperly and then tried to cover up their actions" in his final report.
The RCMP are hoping to use the excuse that they are a federal department not accountable to BC to pre-empt the BC Crown from possibly reopening their case. Not that there's been any indication that that's likely.
So far, Constables Kwesi Millington, Bill Bentley, Gerry Rundel and Corporal Monty Robinson have been exonerated by :
- the Criminal Justice Branch of BC, which, despite having watched the same Paul Pritchard video the rest of us saw, determined the officers were "acting lawfully and responded with reasonable force".
- the Integrated Homicide Investigation Team, who also watched the vid and were so certain no charges would be laid that they didn't even bother to warn the officers first of their rights under the Charter that anything they said could be held in evidence against them or that they had a right to have their lawyers present.
- the federal Department of Justice, which advised the Mounties they were not legally required to attend the Braidwood Inquiry anyway.
For the RCMP's lawyers to ask the BC Supreme Court to prevent a BC public inquiry from delivering on its purpose ... well that smells like shear flopsweat desperation.
But who is left who has the will to hold the renegade officers of this federal paramilitary organization to account?
Update : RCMP distances itself from officers' lawsuit over Dziekanski inquiry
Sgt. Tim Shields, the RCMP's official spokesman in B.C. :
"The position of the RCMP is that the RCMP will co-operate fully with the inquiry and is also recognizing the jurisdiction of the inquiry as having authority.
These lawyers are representing the four officers; they're not representing the RCMP."
While Shields acknowledged the lawyers are paid for by taxpayers, he said the force itself has no power to stop them from contradicting RCMP policy.