An RCMP officer who was posted at the detachment in McLennan has been charged for a second time with impaired driving.
Cpl. Anita Doktor is accused of impaired driving and she has been suspended with pay while her case is investigated.
“We obviously take these incidents very seriously,” says Chief Superintendent Rhonda Blackmore for the RCMP’s Western Alberta District.
“The RCMP has a process dealing with conduct, which includes factors that may be considered as part of the conduct process. The fact that this is a second offence will be considered (as part of that process).”
When asked to comment about the public’s trust in the RCMP given this second charge, Blackmore commented:
“An RCMP member is obviously subject to the same laws that all Canadian citizens are. She will be treated as any citizen, as far as going through the court process and the charges that are laid against her.”
The RCMP Code of Conduct is used when dealing with allegations of officer misconduct.
As per an RCMP news release, on June 1, 2018, the RCMP in High Prairie was dispatched to a convenience store where a complainant observed a female individual drive into the parking lot, exit the vehicle and enter the store.
The complainant suspected the individual was impaired by alcohol but was unsuccessful in convincing her to turn over her vehicle keys.
The High Prairie RCMP was called and attended the scene shortly thereafter.
Upon arrival, the attending officers recognized the suspected impaired driver as being Cpl. Anita Doktor who was subsequently investigated and charged for impaired driving.
Cpl. Doktor is currently suspended with pay and her duty status will be subject to ongoing reviews, the news release adds.
She faced an impaired driving charge in High Prairie Provincial Court in late May.
However, that charge was dismissed and the story from the South Peace News is found below.
Officer acquitted for lack of evidence
For Smoky River Express
An officer with High Prairie RCMP was acquitted of an impaired driving charge when the judge determined that not enough evidence was given during the trial Feb. 21.
Anita Lee Doktor was found not guilty when Judge Jasmine K. Sihra presented the decision in High Prairie provincial court May 28. Details of the decision and trial were presented in a report available on the website of the Canada Legal Information Institute.
“Having considered all of the evidence, the court finds that the Crown has not proven beyond a reasonable doubt that the accused was operating a motor vehicle while her ability to do so was impaired by alcohol,” states the report. “As such, the court finds her not guilty and the charge is dismissed of that offence.”
Doktor was a corporal with the High Prairie RCMP when she was charged with impaired operation on Dec. 5, 2016. She was also a qualified breath technician at the detachment when she was called at her home to assist officers with a possible impaired driver [Mr. G.] about 8:40 p.m.
“The court accepts that the accused attended at the detachment after she had consumed alcohol,” Judge Sihra says. “However, the evidence on the whole is insufficient to convince the court beyond a reasonable doubt that the accused’s ability to operate a motor vehicle was impaired by alcohol.
“The video evidence either refutes the officers’ testimony of physical issues observed on the accused’s part or else does not capture it.
“Also, the evidence on comprehension issues does not pass muster.
“Lastly, even if the accused had been driving, there is no evidence of unusual driving reflected in her parking of her vehicle.
“As to the latter point, there is no need for the court to make a determination on whether the accused was operating a motor vehicle on the date in question.
“On all the evidence, however, the court would have been satisfied that a GMC pick-up truck is a motor vehicle, and further, that the test for circumstantial evidence has been met, and in fact the accused had driven and parked her vehicle at the detachment.
“To conclude otherwise would stretch credulity, however, it is a moot point.”
Doktor was not ordered to provide any breath samples.
Investigating Mr. G., Const. Laurin wanted the accused as the breath technician as she was his friend and roommate, and he wanted to share the milestone of reaching his 15th impaired driving investigation with her, for which he would be receiving an award.
After first seeing the accused at the detachment, it took Const. Laurin a couple of minutes to conclude that Doktor’s lips had wine on them.
He also observed what he described as a wine stain on her sweater.
Const. Lyons noticed the very strong odour of perfume from a distance of at least three feet. He had not smelt perfume on the accused before.
Const. Lyons did not smell alcohol as he believes that it was masked by the perfume.
He admitted that he could not say for sure.
The factors that drew Const. Lyons to the conclusion that Doktor was intoxicated were the experience that Const. Lyons has dealing with intoxicated people, the accused’s demeanor, her out-of-character and unprofessional interactions with Mr. G. and her manner of walking.
Const. Laurin’s belief that the accused was intoxicated was based upon her slurred speech and her difficulty with balance when walking. At one point, he believed that she walked into the doorframe of the breath room. She was unsure of her footing, unsteady on her feet, swaying at some points.
Const. Laurin would not have hesitated to arrest Doktor for impaired operation if there had been reasonable grounds to believe that she had driven.
Const. Laurin spoke to other officers at the detachment too after breath testing of Mr. G.
No one at the detachment had seen Doktor driving. The full report is available online at can.lii.org.