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RCMP making ’scapegoat’ of B.C. officer

(CBC News) – The B.C. police officer charged with assault for kicking a man in the face is being made a scapegoat for mistakes made by the RCMP, the officer’s lawyer says.

Const. Geoff Mantler has pleaded not guilty to the assault on Buddy Tavares, who Mantler kicked when Tavares was on all fours after an arrest in Kelowna in January.

Mantler also pleaded not guilty to the assault of another man during a separate arrest.

Mantler’s lawyer, Neville McDougall, said Tuesday the officer has been “thrown under the bus” by higher echelons of the RCMP to protect the image of the force.

“It’s unfortunate — and quite frankly I expect more from people of the rank of superintendent and deputy commissioner — to look at a 30- to 45-second video and take that as being the complete story,” McDougall said outside court.

McDougall was referring to an online video of Mantler kicking Tavares that went viral after the incident.

“There’s been no discussion as to what supervision was being provided to these junior members. No NCOs were responding to this call for no apparent reason no sergeant, no staff sergeant.”

Mantler has been suspended from the RCMP without pay, a move which McDougall said he also might challenge in federal court.

“Geoff Mantler was thrown under the bus,” McDougall said, “based on public perception and to try to maintain the integrity of the RCMP as a unit, as opposed to what he was acting on that day.”

The most senior member on the scene had just over three years experience — an issue that also forms part of a lawsuit that Tavares has filed against the RCMP.

Tavares is claiming negligence because the officers involved in his arrest were not adequately supervised or instructed.

Dates have yet to be set in the assault trial.

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Categories: Excessive use of Force, Mounties Breaking The Law, Mounties Charged, Mounties Sued.

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    JohnnyG2011.07.16 @ 21:28
  2. I do not see the RCMP management as throwing Mantler under the bus. Your prejudices are showing through here. Mantler threw himself under the bus with his actions. Just what do you expect from management? They issued an apology, which is proper, investigated the actions and recommended charges which are also proper. If they raise any semblance of sympathy or explanation for his unacceptable actions you would be accusing them of cover up and conspiracy. You already claim: “…there’s no question that public perception is the only thinb (SIC) that’s concerning them here. To my mind there is nothing wrong with the actions taken. it will have the effect of either helping or hindering with the public image of the organization which is a byproduct of any action. Its interpretation can be positive or in your cases negative.

    He was given the same training as thousands of others yet he chose, yes HE chose, to act in such a manner. He has been investigated and charged and is facing a court. The lawyer is doing what all lawyers do these days trying to redirect the blame for individual actions onto some other person or entity. Are you really surprised by this?

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    Deepthroat2011.07.14 @ 16:42
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    JohnnyG2011.07.14 @ 14:32
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    sickntired2011.07.13 @ 23:10
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