OPP officer charged with obstruction, breach of trust

These are violations by the Ontario Provincial Police officers dealing with the Criminal Code of Canada, Controlled Substance and Abuse Act, Customs and Excise Act, etc.

OPP officer charged with obstruction, breach of trust

Postby Thomas » Wed Nov 28, 2018 4:35 pm

Lambton officer charged with obstruction, breach of trust

The officer has been with the OPP for 10 years

A Lambton County Ontario Provincial Police officer has been arrested.

The constable is charged with obstruction of justice and breach of trust following an OPP Professional Standards Bureau investigation.

The 31-year-old has been a member of the OPP for 10 years.

He is suspended with pay and scheduled to appear in court Jan. 7, 2019.

https://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/windsor/ ... -1.4923947
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Lambton OPP Officer Facing Two Charges

Postby Thomas » Thu Nov 29, 2018 4:43 pm

10 year officer charged with obstruction of justice, breach of trust.

A constable with Lambton OPP is facing Criminal Code charges.

The force's West Region headquarters reports that 31 year-old Constable Craig Johnston is charged with obstruction of justice and breach of trust.

The charges stem from an investigation conducted by the OPP Professional Standards Bureau, and Johnston is currently suspended with pay.

Police do not say what led to the charges, which were filed on Tuesday.

Johnston -- who has been an OPP officer for 10 years -- will speak to the offences in Sarnia Court on January 7th.

http://www.bayshorebroadcasting.ca/news ... sID=106176
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Lambton OPP officer charged with obstruction of justice

Postby Thomas » Thu Nov 29, 2018 4:45 pm

Lambton OPP officer charged with obstruction of justice, breach of trust

A 31-year-old Lambton OPP officer is facing charges of obstruction of justice and breach of trust following an investigation by the force’s professional standards bureau.

Details about the investigation have not been released, nor has the reason for the investigation itself, but police said Wednesday that Const. Craig Johnston, a 10-year member of the force, was arrested on Tuesday in relation to the charges.

He has been suspended with pay and will appear in court in Sarnia, Ont., on Jan. 7, 2019, police said.

No other information has been made public. 980 CFPL has reached out to the OPP for comment.

https://globalnews.ca/news/4707548/lamb ... r-charged/
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Suspended officer's case moved to April

Postby Thomas » Tue Mar 05, 2019 4:14 pm

The case of a suspended OPP officer charged with obstruction of justice and breach of trust will return to Sarnia court this April.

Const. Craig Johnston’s case returned to court this week, the latest in a series of routine appearances. The charges stem from a series of alleged incidents that took place in the summer of 2017, including — according to court documents — destruction of evidence, inappropriate database requests, and exploiting a position of authority.

Johnson, 31, a ten year veteran of the force, was charged last November after a nearly year-long investigation. His case will return to Sarnia court for another appearance April 1.

Ontario is the only province in Canada that bars police chiefs from suspending officers without pay.

https://www.theobserver.ca/news/local-n ... d-to-april
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OPP officer illegally used database to look up teenager, her

Postby Thomas » Tue Sep 21, 2021 10:32 am

OPP officer illegally used database to look up teenager, her boyfriends

SARNIA – A Southwestern Ontario OPP officer who illegally used a police database to investigate the teen he was mentoring through a First Nation leadership program and her ex-boyfriends has been granted a discharge.

Craig Johnston, a Lambton OPP constable charged nearly three years ago following an internal probe, showed little emotion as a high-level Sarnia judge read his decision over Zoom.

“Accordingly, the discharge will be granted absolutely for Mr. Johnston with respect to this offence,” Superior Court Justice Michael McArthur said.

But Johnston, 34, didn’t escape without punishment, the judge noted, as he still has to deal with potential discipline under the Police Services Act and the embarrassment of being a police officer convicted in his hometown.

“I am ashamed to be here,” Johnston said.

The Sarnia high school and Lambton College graduate, who’s worked with the Lambton OPP since 2010, pleaded guilty to a single charge of accessing police databases without authorization and in a manner unrelated to his duties.

The court heard Johnston was assigned to mentor an 18-year-old person selected from the Aamjiwnaang First Nation to participate in the OPP West Region’s Police Ethnic and Cultural Exchange Program (PEACE) during the summer of 2017. Between July 1 and Aug. 31, he searched the young woman’s name four times in the database.

He also searched two other men three times combined, including her then-boyfriend, and showed her the results.

“This information, along with the encouragement of Craig Johnston, were factors leading to (her) decision to end her relationships, believing it was good for her goal of becoming a police officer,” assistant Crown attorney Brian White said.

Officers need ID and passwords to access these databases, and are warned they can only be used for “specific and lawful purposes,” White said. They’re also not supposed to show the information to other people.

Defence lawyer Nick Cake said his client didn’t believe a complete background check was done on the young woman before she was accepted into PEACE.

“Const. Johnston was concerned about that,” Cake said. “He did not know who this young lady was prior to the program. He really didn’t know who was seated beside him.”

But she did “nothing” to raise his suspicions, Cake added.

If there were concerns over the candidate, White said, it was “very” clear Johnston was supposed to contact the program’s co-ordinator.

“Instead, the officer did four inquiries on four separate occasions,” White said. “This isn’t a momentary mistake.”

White also called the incident a breach of trust linked to the program, which is meant to instil trust between police and the First Nation.

Cake countered his client wanted to help the young woman become an “ideal” OPP candidate, so he “erroneously” used the system to show her how it worked and to demonstrate how social media and connections can affect career opportunities.

“It was certainly a misguided use involving access of the information,” McArthur said.

The judge, though, also gave Johnston credit for taking counselling on his own over the past three years.

“You’ve done an exceedingly good job at addressing matters,” he said.

McArthur sided with Cake, who asked for an absolute discharge, as opposed to White, who requested a discharge conditional on probation and Johnston not contacting the woman or the two men.

Despite the discharge, Cake pointed out there will be “collateral impact” for his client, as he’s still under an ongoing Police Services Act prosecution.

“Const. Johnston is not out of the woods yet,” said Cake, noting the officer faces the potential of demotion, suspension or even termination.

“I want to continue to be a police officer,” Johnston said.

Lambton OPP and West Region OPP spokespeople were asked about the status of the Police Services Act prosecution and if Johnston is able to return to work, given the discharge, but they did not respond by press time.

Johnston has been suspended with pay since February 2018. His salary was nearly $104,000 in 2019 and more than $105,000 in 2020, according to the so-called Sunshine List records. Ontario is the only province in Canada that doesn’t allow police chiefs to suspend officers without pay.

Charges of breach of trust and obstructing justice first laid in November 2018 were withdrawn after he pleaded guilty to the other charge.

tbridge@postmedia.com

https://lfpress.com/news/local-news/opp ... boyfriends
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Lambton OPP officer granted discharge nearly three years aft

Postby Thomas » Tue Sep 21, 2021 10:35 am

Lambton OPP officer granted discharge nearly three years after criminal charges surfaced

A Southwestern Ontario OPP officer who illegally used a police database to investigate the teen he was mentoring through a First Nation leadership program and her ex-boyfriends has been granted a discharge.

Craig Johnston, a Lambton OPP constable charged nearly three years ago following an internal probe, showed little emotion as a high-level Sarnia judge read his decision Friday afternoon over Zoom.

“Accordingly, the discharge will be granted absolutely for Mr. Johnston with respect to this offence,” Superior Court Justice Michael McArthur said.

But Johnston, 34, didn’t escape without punishment, the judge noted, as he still has to deal with potential discipline under the Police Services Act and the embarrassment of being a police officer convicted in his hometown.

“I am ashamed to be here,” Johnston said.

The Sarnia high school and Lambton College grad, who’s worked with the Lambton OPP since 2010, pleaded guilty to a single charge of accessing police databases without authorization and in a manner unrelated to his duties.

The court heard Johnston was assigned to mentor an 18-year-old person selected from the Aamjiwnaang First Nation to participate in the OPP West Region’s Police Ethnic and Cultural Exchange Program (PEACE) during the summer of 2017. Between July 1 and Aug. 31, he searched the young woman’s name four times in the database.

He also searched two other men three times combined, including her then-boyfriend, and showed her the results.

“This information, along with the encouragement of Craig Johnston, were factors leading to (her) decision to end her relationships, believing it was good for her goal of becoming a police officer,” assistant Crown attorney Brian White said.

Officers need ID and passwords to access these databases, and are warned they can only be used for “specific and lawful purposes,” White said. They’re also not supposed to show the information to other people.

Defence lawyer Nick Cake said his client didn’t believe a complete background check was done on the young woman before she was accepted into PEACE.

“Const. Johnston was concerned about that,” Cake said. “He did not know who this young lady was prior to the program.

“He really didn’t know who was seated beside him.”

But she did “nothing” to raise his suspicions, Cake added.

If there were concerns over the candidate, White said, it was “very” clear Johnston was supposed to contact the program’s co-ordinator.

“Instead, the officer did four inquiries on four separate occasions,” White said. “This isn’t a momentary mistake.”

White also called the incident a breach of trust linked to the program, which is meant to instil trust between police and the First Nation.

Cake countered his client wanted to help the young woman become an “ideal” OPP candidate, so he “erroneously” used the system to show her how it worked and to demonstrate how social media and connections can affect career opportunities.

“It was certainly a misguided use involving access of the information,” McArthur said.

The judge, though, also gave Johnston credit for taking counselling on his own over the past three years.

“You’ve done an exceedingly good job at addressing matters,” he said.

McArthur sided with Cake, who asked for an absolute discharge, as opposed to White, who requested a discharge conditional on probation and Johnston not contacting the woman or the two men.

Despite the discharge, Cake pointed out there will be “collateral impact” for his client, as he’s still under an ongoing Police Services Act prosecution.

“Const. Johnston is not out of the woods yet,” said Cake, noting the officer faces the potential of demotion, suspension or even termination.

“I want to continue to be a police officer,” Johnston said.

Lambton OPP and West Region OPP spokespeople were asked Friday about the status of the Police Services Act prosecution and if Johnston is able to return to work, given the discharge, but they did not respond by press time.

Johnston has been suspended with pay since February 2018. His salary was nearly $104,000 in 2019 and more than $105,000 in 2020, according to sunshineliststats.com. Ontario is the only province in Canada that doesn’t allow police chiefs to suspend officers without pay.

Charges of breach of trust and obstructing justice first laid in November 2018 were withdrawn after he pleaded guilty to the other charge.

tbridge@postmedia.com

https://www.theobserver.ca/news/lambton ... s-surfaced
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