Review of 1997 Police Misconduct Investigation
The Calgary Police Commission is in the process of reviewing a series of police misconduct investigations conducted by the Calgary Police Service between 1997 and 2001. The investigations occurred after a youth reported that then-Constable Sean Chu sexually assaulted her.
The initial internal investigation resulted in no criminal charges or internal discipline. After concerns were raised about the investigation by the youth, an internal review of the investigation occurred, which also resulted in no disciplinary action. An appeal process then occurred, followed by a third internal investigation that resulted in a disciplinary hearing and a finding of discreditable conduct.
Under Alberta’s Police Act, the Commission’s Public Complaint Director has the authority to review any investigation into police conduct. More information is being provided to the public about this review than is typical because the high-profile nature of this case could significantly impact the public’s trust in policing.
What the review will examine:
- Did the Calgary Police Service properly follow the procedures in place at the time for investigating police misconduct complaints?
- Were there any gaps in the procedures at the time that still exist today?
- Would a similar incident be handled differently under current procedures?
- Are any additional changes to police misconduct investigation procedures needed?
What the review cannot do:
- Evaluate whether the criminal investigation and decision not to lay criminal charges were correct. The Commission does not have the legal authority to review criminal investigations.
- Lay new charges. The Commission does not have the legal power to criminally charge people and only has the power to lay police misconduct charges against the current police chief.
- Re-investigate and publicly report on the actions of former Constable Sean Chu.
- Determine former Constable Sean Chu’s fitness for public office.
Who is involved in the review?
- The Commission’s Public Complaint Director is conducting the review.
- The Calgary Police Service is providing all relevant records for the review.
- The Calgary Police Commission will assess the results and decide whether any further changes to the police misconduct investigation procedures are needed.
The expected completion date for the review was March 2022, however, it has taken longer than anticipated to gather the relevant documents due to the length of time that has passed since the initial investigations.
The results will be made public in some form after the Commission has received and discussed the final report.