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North Van RCMP officer charged with assaulting suspect

A North Vancouver RCMP officer has been charged with assault after he allegedly assaulted a suspect last October while the man was being handcuffed. The BC Prosecution Service announced Tuesday that Const.
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A North Vancouver RCMP officer has been charged with assault after he allegedly assaulted a suspect last October while the man was being handcuffed.

The BC Prosecution Service announced Tuesday that Const. Hirday Olak of the North Vancouver RCMP faces one charge of assault in relation to the incident.

According to the RCMP, North Vancouver officers were called out shortly after midnight on Oct. 8, 2019 to investigate a complaint of theft from a vehicle.

When police arrived, the suspect allegedly fled and was found nearby by two of the officers.

While those officers were handcuffing the suspect, Olak allegedly assaulted him.

After one of the other officers came forward with concerns about Olak’s use of force, the RCMP launched an investigation.

The charge was approved by a prosecutor in a different jurisdiction who had no prior contact with Olak.

“As police, we are expected to enforce and uphold the law and investigate where someone is believed to have broken it. Reporting a colleague is a difficult position to be in, but the decision to do so is what we expected, and integral in maintaining public trust and confidence,” said Supt. Ghalib Bhayani, Officer in Charge of the North Vancouver RCMP, in a statement.

Olak has been reassigned to administrative duties, said Staff Sgt. Janelle Shoihet, spokesperson for the B.C. RCMP’s E Division headquarters.

“His duty status is subject to continual review and assessment,” she said.

Olak is scheduled to make a first appearance on the charge in North Vancouver provincial court in July.

The suspect who was allegedly assaulted by Olak was not charged with the theft, according to the RCMP, because of insufficient evidence.