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Decline in downtown drug dealing allows cops to focus on bikers: report

Saturday, February 20th, 2010 | 12:15 pm

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By John McDonald

Kelowna RCMP will be introducing its new crime analyst on Monday, during the bi-monthly crime report to Kelowna City Council.

Dale Sutherland will be providing councillors with crime statistics for December and January.

Sutherland has been a RCMP criminal intelligence analyst for two years and brings a background in computational mathematics to her position.

She will be bringing analytical software, crime databases and other research tools to bear on crime in Kelowna and will help with the prolific offender management program.

Councillors will also hear from Insp. Cam Forgues, acting superintendent, that downtown enforcement unit officers have noticed a drop in the number of “usuals” returning to the downtown core and are planning drug sweep operations for 2010 based on that.

The drop has allowed the unit to focus on “outlaw motorcyle gangs” and stolen vehicles, the report says.

The municipal traffic section issued 680 violation tickets in December and 685 in January.

Forgues will tell council that Kelowna detachment’s 59 auxiliary officers were busy in 2009, with eight new constables coming onboard and 11 leaving for various reasons.

Auxiliaries worked close to 14,000 service hours last year, bolstered by their service during the interface fires in West Kelowna when 41 of 59 constables responded on the first night of the fire, eventually logging over 1,200 hours during the evacuations.

Forgues will also tell councillors that both the general investigation and serious crime units have been busy with diesel fuel thefts, grow-ops, counterfeit currency and identity theft cases. One woman is facing over 100 counts of theft of mail and production of counterfeit documents.

Two males have also been charged with numerous counts of passing counterfeit currency.

Kelowna was billed for 142.5 full-time members in December and 140.5 in January.

news@kelowna.com

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4 Responses to “Decline in downtown drug dealing allows cops to focus on bikers: report”

  1. grumpydigger says:
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    The drug dealing may have declined downtown ,but it did not disappear it just moved into residential areas that had no problem before…..

    They still need the same amount of police officers to deal with it……and when summer returns the downtown area will have the same amount of drug use…..but you have to give the RCMP credit going after the bikers will definitely boost their credibility with the mainstream public

  2. Fred says:
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    The dealers have moved, and the dealing goes on. Homeless
    people are moving to areas around Capri Centre, out behind
    places like Orchard Plaza and of course Rutland. Along with that crowd comes vice and dealers. I don’t believe for a minute that the problem is being solved unfortunately
    it just moved. People need to feel good but they also have
    to know progress is being made and I don’t think there is the kind of progress that is being suggested

  3. Mott Hoople says:
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    680 Violation tickets (traffic) means they are NOT doing their job. If a cop cant write 20 a shift its time to go back to ticket writing school.

  4. Speculator says:
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    While Drug dealing may have declined downtown, it has increased in our residential neighborhoods where no police patrols are made. The problem is now worse, we now have dealers, users, and criminal activity closer to our homes and the RCMP do not respond to residential complaints to begin with.
    If the RCMP think they are impressing someone with their “hard work”, let them think again. Our City is no better off today then it was 2 years ago, it’s actually worse.
    The number of Traffic tickets written is pathetic, but due to the lack of a traffic section with 15-20 members like it once had a few years ago.
    Kelowna has over 140 members, and on any given day, if your lucky, you might see 6 of them around town, otherwise you might see 6-10 cars at local doughnut shops or restaurants.
    The problem we are facing now is that the RCMP are not a Community oriented force with concerns for residential problems, so the drug traffiking problem will grow in our residential areas.
    Kelowna needs a new Municipal force to deal with Community Policing, and the RCMP can stay and babysit the “outlaw motorcycle gangsters” and criminals.

    I hope our fearless Council recognizes the same movement that we have in regards to druggies. They better understand that the cops have chased the drug industry out of downtown and closer to our front doors.

    Please continue discussion on the forum: link