New Westminster Police are set to take over the investigation into a controversial arrest in which Coquitlam RCMP officers were filmed dragging an elderly man down the stairs, and manhandling an elderly woman as their granddaughter cries at officers.
The incident, which was revealed by Daily Hive, occurred at around 10:30 pm on Thursday, October 27, and followed a voting disagreement at a condo strata meeting being held at the Best Western Hotel at 319 North Road.
A video shot at the scene shows the elderly man laying on the landing of the hotel stairs as an officer screams “stop resisting.”
The officer then seems to have dragged the man down the stairs. Meanwhile, another officer is attempting to handcuff the elderly woman, while her granddaughter can be heard screaming, “Don’t do that! That’s my grandmother!”
After seeing the video, Coquitlam RCMP Supt. Sean Maloney, Officer in Charge of Coquitlam RCMP, said, “As the Officer in Charge of Coquitlam RCMP Detachment, I have initiated a review into the actions of the police officers involved. This review will also include looking further into the reasons behind our attendance.”
However, in an update issued to the media on Friday, Coquitlam RCMP confirmed that an external police investigation has now been ordered into the incident.
“The RCMP can now confirm that we have requested the New Westminster Police to conduct an external police investigation into the incident,” read a statement. “New Westminster Police will investigate the totality of the incident, including the actions of the Coquitlam RCMP.”
‘What else will they do?’
Victor Kim, who filmed the altercation, believes the situation could have been handled better by the Coquitlam RCMP. Speaking to Daily Hive, he said:
“The police officers have no conscience. I respect what they do, but after last night, it makes me think.”
“If they can do that to an old couple, what else will they do to anybody?” adds Kim.
“I don’t think [the officers] were in danger from that couple. Maybe they were doing their job, but that was too much.”