Wednesday, 12 Aug 2020

RCMP call for expanded police and crisis teams, Interior Health says ‘not at this time’

During a rare press conference Thursday morning, RCMP Southeast District Chief Supt. Brad Hougli said he was “deeply concerned” when he saw a surveillance video showing part of a wellness check conducted by an RCMP officer.

In the video, Const. Lacy Browning drags UBC Okanagan nursing student Mona Wang handcuffed and half-naked down a carpeted hallway to the building’s lobby.

The officer then steps on Wang’s head with her boot, and about a minute later lifts her head up by her hair.

“I am very sorry to Ms. Wang for what occurred,” Haugli said. “If that was my family member or friend, I would have deep concerns and want answers as well.”

Haugli is now calling for Kelowna’s police and crisis team, also known as the PACT program, to be expanded.

“It is a high goal to achieve, but we need to get to the table and start working on that,” he said.

Ultimately, Haugli said he wants to see an Interior Health nurse paired with an officer for every mental health-related call.

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