Top Mountie apologizes for 'rotten apples'

May 29, 2012 at 1:59 PM
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OTTAWA, May 29 (UPI) -- The commissioner of the Royal Canadian Mounted Police issued a rare open letter to citizens promising to weed out "rotten apples" from the force.

Although he mentioned no specific names or incidents, Bob Paulson was apparently responding to international news coverage of an Alberta Mountie who admitted to drinking and having sex on the job and to sexual harassment.

Staff Sgt. Don Ray wasn't fired, but rather transferred to British Columbia with a demotion and fine of 10 days pay.

Paulson said he has ordered an overhaul of the force's disciplinary policies, saying the reputation of the entire RCMP is tainted by "the few rotten apples you hear about on the news who demonstrate unacceptable behavior.

"Sometimes this behavior is met with punishment that just does not cut it," he wrote.

The commissioner said he would work with politicians to modernize the federal act that governs the force as well as implement internal reforms.

"I am trying to run a modern police force with a discipline system that was current 25 years ago," he wrote. "It's unsatisfactory that we have to continue spending your tax dollars to pay individuals that don't deserve to be in the RCMP."

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