August 14, 2007
1200 Vanier Parkway
Ottawa, ON K1A 0R2
Attention: Commissioner William J.S. Elliott
Re: Current Status and Reputation of the RCMP
Dear Commissioner Elliott:
Congratulations on your recent appointment to the Commissioner of the Royal
Canadian Mounted Police. I hope you will be the one to get the RCMP back on
the right track and have it again recognized as the Worlds Best Police Force.
I am a former member of the force and now feel I must express my concerns and
comments with regards to the current state of the RCMP. Even though I am no
longer an active member of the force I will always pride myself and feel honoured
to have served Canada as a member of the RCMP.
In the past few years is appears some members of the RCMP are lowering their
standards and conduct with regards to professionalism, work ethics, public
relations and loyalty to the force. The majority of the civilian population of
Canada and other countries notice this change and I feel are losing respect for
the once proud and world wide respected force. This feeling is even greater and
more devastating to former members of the RCMP because even though they
are retired the RCMP Spirit and pride will always live within them. To be fair I
think it is not just the police force that has suffered a changing way, it is most
other professions as well. It would be nice if the RCMP would be the first to set
an example to the rest of the working force showing that professionalism, pride
and a good public image is paramount in the minds of all serving members.
I would like to bring to your attention a newspaper article that was published in
the Vancouver Sun Newspaper on August 8, 2007. (See Below)
RCMP officer given second chance despite violations
Chad Skelton, Vancouver Sun
Published: Wednesday, August 08, 2007
A Chilliwack RCMP officer who threw a rock at a transit bus, hung out with a known
criminal and ran into seven parked cars while driving drunk in North Vancouver is still
on the job, The Vancouver Sun has learned.
Const. Milo Kent Ramsey was docked 12 days' pay but allowed to keep his job after a
recent hearing by the RCMP's disciplinary board.
The board found that while Ramsey's conduct was "disgraceful," he had shown remorse
for his actions, entered counselling and stopped drinking. Ramsey's case was heard in
May by three senior Mounties. A written copy of their decision was released in response
to a request from The Sun.
The decision indicates Ramsey committed several violations of the RCMP's code of
conduct over a one-month period, and admitted to them all.
On Dec. 15, 2005, according to the decision, Ramsey got into an argument with a
Whistler bus driver after mistakenly believing that he had left his police identification on
the bus. After the driver failed to find the ID, Ramsey, who was intoxicated, began
"shouting obscenities" and refused to leave.
"Ramsey had to be physically removed from the bus by a security officer and other
passengers," states the decision. "After being removed from the bus, Ramsey threw a rock
at the driver's door. The rock did not cause any damage."
A month later, on Jan. 18, 2006, Ramsey got into more trouble while hanging out with a
friend who had a criminal record, the decision says. The friend, Alexander McDonald,
picked up a prostitute in Vancouver and brought her back to Ramsey's motor home,
Unfortunately for McDonald, the "prostitute" was actually an undercover Vancouver
police officer. When police entered Ramsey's motor home, they found him asleep.
A search uncovered a canister of Ramsey's RCMP-issued pepper spray lying loose and
unsecured in the vehicle - a violation of RCMP rules.
According to the board's decision, Ramsey didn't know McDonald was planning to pick
up a prostitute. However, Ramsey was aware of McDonald's criminal past.
A year earlier, he had used a police database to check if McDonald had a record, itself a
violation of RCMP rules. The decision doesn't indicate what McDonald's record was for.
Three days after Ramsey's run-in with Vancouver police, he got in trouble again.
On Jan. 21, 2006, North Vancouver RCMP responded to a call of a motorhome being
driven erratically; it had struck seven parked cars.
"Police officers eventually located the motorhome stuck between several large rocks
placed to prevent vehicles from going farther up the road," states the decision. "It was
apparent that the motorhome had backed over a resident's hedge and struck a carport
Police ordered Ramsey out of the vehicle, but he refused. One officer even tried to pull
Ramsey out of the motorhome, but failed. Eventually, police had to use their dog unit to
get Ramsey out.
Ramsey was taken to the North Vancouver detachment, where he was given a
breathalyser test - his blood-alcohol level was 0.15, nearly twice the legal limit. Ramsey
was charged with impaired driving and, last September, pleaded guilty, receiving an
$800 fine and a one-year driving prohibition.
In deciding not to fire Ramsey, the board stated that "the main goal of disciplinary action
is not necessarily to punish, but to offer the chance for rehabilitation."
It also noted Ramsey, an 11-year veteran of the force, had no prior disciplinary
RCMP spokesman Corp. Pierre Lemaitre said the fact Ramsey's fellow officers arrested
him shows the force takes drunk driving by its members seriously.
"Whether the [board's] punishment was enough - that's not for me to say," he said.
Ramsey, a longtime traffic cop with Chilliwack RCMP, is working at the Mounties'
training centre in Chilliwack - and unable to drive a patrol car because of his court
sentence. He wasn't on shift today and could not be reached to comment.
It is incidents like this that has led to the deterioration of the RCMP’s reputation
and credibility. I think this is a poor message that it sends to other members of
the force indicating that they can violate laws of the Criminal Code and RCMP
Act and only suffer minimal repercussions. I feel if someone of authority would
administer strict, firm and proper justice it would go a long way to getting the
reputation of the force back to where it should be. It is a privilege to be a
member of the RCMP and any member who abuses it should not be allowed to
continue in the force as it just tarnishes the reputation of the many other good
members who are serving in the force with professionalism and pride.
I think it is time for the force to get back to basics by displaying good strong
supervision, discipline and a sense of pride and dedication in all areas of police
Reg # 29195