I was disgusted to see the video of an intoxicated man being taken down hard by a Maple Ridge RCMP officer. I was even more frustrated by the response from their spokesperson who said that the intoxicated man was being verbally and physically abusive towards the officer. Really? When I watch that video I see a guy who can barely stand up and even if he was verbally abusive are we saying the RCMP have to use physical force when someone says something they don’t like? Either this officer is overly sensitive to speech or he has no other tools to deal with a seemingly unarmed intoxicated man.
From a civilians point of view I would think the first thing the officer could have done was get the guy out of the truck and put handcuffs on him. That would reduce any opportunity for the man to be physically abusive towards the officer. I’m curious as to how the officer was speaking to the individual because that can make a huge difference as to how someone responds. The second thing the officer could have done was not to give a crap about what a drunk guy has to say. Secure the scene and individual, get back to office to do a thorough report about what was said and the actions of that individual and file it!
This is how the police get a bad name. It is not because an educated public can’t recognize the complexities of their job, we can, but what makes it difficult is to support a blatant disregard for human life. This guy could have been severely injured and being drunk in a public space doesn’t warrant slamming a man to the ground and then picking him up so violently. The Royal Canadian Mounted Police need to train officers differently when dealing with mental health issues and/or intoxicated individuals.
I have a huge amount of respect for the RCMP overall but I have to call it like I see it. They need to look at alternative ways of responding to issues such as this. They also have to respect people who call in like the woman in the news story. She was concerned, wanted acknowledgement of her messages and possibly an explanation for what she saw. I realize we only have one side of the story but this isn’t the first time we have seen some questionable conduct by police caught on video by somebody who likely didn’t set out on their day to capture such an act.
To the Maple Ridge RCMP: Get your act together and assess whether officers are as equipped as they could be to deal with these types of situations and stop making excuses for those who may already have a huge chip on their shoulder.