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Getting rid of Chief Dave Scott

Mayor Maddin takes the first steps

Christine SilverbergWe applaud Mayor Maddin's choice of Christine Silverberg to choose the new chief and we hope that the information on these pages will be helpful to her and that she will take time to check what we have to say against the facts.

Saskatoon is rife with racism, sexism, and homophobia. The crimes of poverty -- drug related crimes and petty crimes against poverty -- have grown exponentially as the police service has promoted a parade of corporals to sergeants to staff-sergeants to superintendents, few of them Native, female, or, heaven forbid, gay.

This bunch of white boyz2men are masters at talking out one side of their mouths. City Council, which the Board of Police Commissioners reports to, is also full of treachery, having operated for years under the aegis of a pro-biz mayor who didn't hesitate to use public facilities for private gain.

May 2003: Crisis of leadership

During the fall of 2001, the new chief was chosen. As of January, 2002, he has been so low-key as to be almost invisible.

He has stated that he has made his career on community policing in Calgary.

inJusticebusters was surprised as everyone else when in the middle of Friday afternoon, June 22, we learned that Mayor Maddin and the Board of Commissioners had fired Chief Dave Scott.

Unless his right-hand man, CID Superintendent Brian Dueck is also canned, the commission can make no pretense to cleaning up the Saskatoon Police Service -- or to being seen in the eyes of the world to have cleaned up. The rhethoric at the news conference refers to disagreements in the "vision" for community policing in Saskatoon.

Community policing, as we understand it from the Winnipeg site. relies on trust between citizens and police. (Reading this three years later, we realize that Winnipeg's claims are hypocritical as Loren Schinkel is just as bad as Dueck) Real community policing does not tolerate the methods which Dueck has routinely used in his rise to the top. We must remember that as the head of a platoon for many years, this corrupt cop has influenced many officers in the medium ranks and that right now he has 90 employees working under him.

The "scuttlebutt" since even before Mayor Maddin's election as mayor last October has been that Dueck and Scott were "like this," the phrase accompanied by the middle finger wrapped tightly around the index finger. The former Board of Police Commissioners supported this pair of twisted digits and manoevred a situation where, just before Christmas, Maddin was outvoted and Scott's contract was renewed for three years.

Now Scott is gone, with a hefty settlement deal and a speech about dignity. Dueck is still there, poised to bid for the office which his friend has just vacated. The search for a new chief is to be conducted by former Calgary police chief Christine Silverberg. This is a far cry from a full public inquiry into entrenched corruption in the Saskatoon Police service, but it is a start.

As the eyes of Canada and the world watch Saskatoon, inJusticebusters will do everything in our power to make sure that Silverberg is fully informed about the difficulties any honest person filling this position will face. The first job will be to get rid of Dueck and his thugs.

We must remember this: Superintendent Dueck has been calling for a "detox centre" and citing a lack of funds as the reason. He is the single most important person in the police service who could have made a detox centre happen. He didn't. Instead the drugs have flowed more and more freely. The money has been going somewhere.

As far as cops who are trigger happy with their guns and pepper-spray whenever they see a Native person, all of that could be swiftly handled under an honest chief. The serious racists can be quickly identified and fired. Others can be rehabilitated and retrained.

Saskatoon's Police Chief Dave Scott terminated

Brian DueckSASKATOON - The Chief of Police for the Saskatoon Police Service, Dave Scott is out of a job.

The decision was announced this afternoon by the city's Board of Police Commissioners at a hastily called news conference.

Scott's three year contract was set to expire in 15 months.

He'll receive 15 months salary- about $150 thousand.

The commissions won't say why they made this decision.

The only comment commission members would offer was that Scott's vision of policing doesn't match the board's.

The board also talked about a new vision for the department, what they called a "community approach".

The board denies Scott's termination has anything to do with his performance, or the controversy surrounding the police over the past year.

Two officers are accused of abandoning an aboriginal man on the outskirts of the city in freezing temperatures.

An RCMP task force is still investigating the deaths of two other men who froze to death in the same area.

The deputy chief has been appointed as interm head of the department.

The challenge before Saskatoon Mayor Jim Maddin
(posted Dec. 2000)

Police Chief Dave Scott

The Saskatoon Police Service has had many opportunities to clean up its reputation and it has blown every one of them. All it would have had to do was apologize to citizens it has wronged and get rid of the cops who did it.

Once again, it has a chance to do the right thing. It will be difficult because at least one of the cops who is responsible for staining the reputation of the whole force has risen to the rank of Superintendent. Brian Dueck, if he is running true to the form he has shown over the past ten years has no intention of apologizing or resigning but rather has his sights on even higher positions. He is out of control and has been out of control for quite some time. His superiors know he is out of control. Perhaps throughout his lengthy career he has gathered dirty secrets on his fellow officers and that is why no one will stand up to him.

Dave Scott, whose five year tenure is up and whose position as chief is under review has been given a reprieve by the new mayor, Jim Maddin, who on Dec. 12, 2000, said he would announce a decision about Scott on December 29.

Perry Bellgarde, Chief of the Federation of Saskatchewan Indians has said unequivocally that Scott should go. Local Vice-Chief Lawrence Joseph has also made such a call.

The FSIN has not been able to work with Scott and has appointed its own task force to investigate the brutal treatment of natives in Saskatoon.

The native community has many issues with the Saskatoon Police Service, including internal racism.

We have just heard that Scott will be holding a news conference tomorrow morning( July 4, 2001). We hope the media will ask him some hard questions.

Mayor Jim Maddin

Chief Dave Scott promoted Dueck to the position he now holds -- one of the dozen highest paid officials on the city payroll -- and the public has a right to know why he showed such terrible judgment.

Now that Mayor Maddin (right) has taken charge of the situation six months later, the public still has a right to full disclosure of the inner goings-on which have strangleheld the city police service. He should not simply be allowed to walk away with a chunk of money and relax at the lake.

The city has done without important services for many years.

Just as it has taken Chile many years and great cost to bring General Pinochet to some kind of public account, so it may take this city a while to regain honour. This also applies to provincial officials -- notably Roy Romanow and Bob Mitchell -- who have retired with their pensions and on-paper reputations.

Most natives live on the city's poorer west side and that is Superintendent Dueck's domain. Dueck spends some of his time schmoozing up local native community leaders who are trying to get programs going in the downtown core.

Perry Bellgard Chief FSIB

As former head of the integrated drug unit, before he took over as west side super, Dueck schmoozed up the frontline workers trying to deal with drug addiction on both the east and west sides of Saskatoon. Schmoosing is something Dueck has a talent for. About honest police work he seems to know nothing.

Predictably, the brass have stood behind Scott as he has rewarded them with promotions and pay raises. However, as more of the truth is uncovered, no doubt some of them will also fall away.

The same peer pressure which operates on the playground is at work among these people. Within every gang of bullies are one or two people who eventually can no longer stomach the behavior of their comrades.

Perhaps Superintendent Hargarten, formerly of Dueck's platoon, and who always treated us with courtesy, even when he was videotaping our arrest for "defaming" Dueck will be the one. Maybe it will be someone else. Maybe the whole bunch of them will come clean.

Al StickneyEven police union head Al Stickney (right) has found it difficult to defend Dueck. On Nov. 30, following the Fifth Estate airing of the "Scandal of the Century" story he made a weak statement, a platitude really, saying that it is easy to criticise a police officer (in this case, Brian Dueck) because "we aren't there to see what he went through.

The truth is that we were there, in Saskatoon, reading the papers, investigating his investigations and complaining to his superiors.

And we are still here.

Neither the union or the Board of Commissioners should hesitate to disassociate themselves from Dueck. He has committed criminal actions and those actions have been made public. He is responsible for the Police Service and its employers -- the Board of Commissioners and the City of Saskatoon -- being targeted in a lawsuit in excess of ten million dollars. Since the lawsuit was filed in 1994, the taxpayers have been paying his legal bills.

Brian Dueck

On Feb. 18 2000, Dueck speaking for police, cites lack of detox facilities as excuse for taking drunks out of town to die.

A decent detox center could have been built with that tab! A year after he had been named as a defendant in the lawsuit, in August 1994 Dueck abused his office to have one of the plaintiffs and now the co-owner of this website Richard Klassen, criminally charged with defamatory libel. Sheila Steele was charged at the same time. As a defendant in a lawsuit, he was out of line to have these charges laid. The allegations we made were true and they are still true. We were both acquitted of having defamed him and our allegations have been posted on the Internet for almost three years. The taxpayers also paid to prosecute the case and may indeed end up paying for further claims resulting from Dueck's action in having us charged. Steele was denied her charter rights to free speech for a year and Klassen for four years under a court ordered gag order while the proceedings were going on.

Now the City of Saskatoon is footing the bill once again as Dueck's lawyer, Rossman, goes to Court of Queen's Bench on Jan. 16, 2001 to apply for a further gag order regarding the information at issue in the $10M lawsuit.

Mayor Jim Maddin doesn't need inJusticebusters to tell him he faces a challenge as he decides how to proceed with cleaning up the Saskatoon Police Service. He is faced with confronting a policy of covering things up dating back at least to the David Milgaard wrongful conviction. As a former member of the force, he knows far more about what he is confronting than we do. His desire for a more community-based policy is sound but we would point out that this has been tried in other jurisdictions (Los Angeles) and failed utterly because corrupt police officers were involved in implementing it.

Saskatoon is still a relatively small city. The racial problems are serious but they are nothing compared to what exists in larger cities where police corruption has been entrenched for decades. Hard drugs also present a serious problem which grows more serious each day as the police pursue potheads and let the more dangerous stuff flow.

Saskatoon is a beautiful place and most of us live here because we want to, despite the inclement weather. A clean police force may seem like an impossible dream but if Dueck was fired and charged with his crimes, it would suddenly seem more possible.

Dueck and his platoon successfully drove Richard Klassen out of town and silenced Sheila Steele five years ago. However, Klassen is still active and his lawsuit against Dueck is proceeding through the discovery phase.

All his legal attempts to to silence us have failed -- because we tell the truth and the Courts, once the truth is placed before them, tend to respect it, even in Saskatchewan.

Note: The reason we have so many pictures of Dueck and do not have pictures of other office is simple. Dueck has always made himself available to the media, whether he is promoting a manufactured scandal, "exposing" the Ritalin problem or calling for a detox centre. The day after the airing of the Fifth Estate show, his first move was to contact CBC and whine to them. PR is his modus operendi. If I hear one more Native spokesman or frontline youth worker tell me what a great guy Brian is, I might just puke.

--Sheila Steele, July 3, 2001

According to an article "Saskatoon freezing deaths" in Saturday Night magazine August 19, 2000, the Native task force had received over 400 calls from citizens who had been abused by the police. inJusticebusters have also been receiving testimonials from Saskatoon people who have been harrassed for many years and have been unable to find any avenue to have their grievances fairly arbitrated. We are gathering the necessary documentation to back up these stories and will publish them as they are ready.

The Dueck story has been up for two and a half years and we are finally getting some attention. December 2004: Dueck gets to walk away with his pension