A review has been ordered into the “inadequate” discipline of an off-duty Surrey Police Service constable who failed a roadside breath test and tried to use his position to get off easy.
The Office of the Police Complaint Commissioner said it has ordered a review by a retired judge into the findings of a discipline proceeding relating to allegations of discreditable conduct and corrupt practice against SPS Const. Rajbir Thaper.
Thaper was investigated in relation to an off-duty incident on Aug. 26, 2022, where he was issued an immediate roadside prohibition for failing a breath test. During the traffic stop, Const. Thaper was found to have tried to use his position as a police officer to obtain preferential treatment from the investigating members.
He was also found to have been driving with an expired driver’s license.
The matter was investigated by the SPS and during a subsequent discipline proceeding, Thaper was found to have committed two allegations of discreditable conduct and one allegation of corrupt practice.
The discipline authority recommended that Thaper receive a five-day suspension without pay for driving while impaired and three-day suspension without pay for seeking preferential treatment, to be served concurrently, and a written reprimand for driving with an expired driver’s license.
Discipline authorities are generally senior ranking police officers who are required under the Police Actto make determinations regarding the investigation and discipline of police officers alleged to have committed misconduct.
In a Notice of Review on the Record issued Wednesday (Aug. 30), Police Complaint Commissioner Clayton Pecknold has “determined that the proposed discipline does not adequately address the seriousness of Constable Thaper’s conduct and that the level of discipline proposed by the discipline authority does not sufficiently consider several aggravating factors.”
The Honourable Elizabeth Arnold-Bailey, retired BC Supreme Court Justice, will preside as the adjudicator of the Review on the Record, which has yet to be scheduled.
The Police Complaint commissioner is a civilian, independent Officer of the Legislature overseeing complaints, investigations and discipline involving municipal police in British Columbia.