Officer charged with obstruction
24-year EPS veteran accused of illegally influencing a family court proceeding
A city police sergeant with 24 years of experience is facing obstruction of justice charges in relation to his involvement in family court proceedings in Edmonton in 2016, the province’s police watchdog said.
Sgt. Kevin Fald was arrested Wednesday by the Alberta Serious Incident Response Team (ASIRT) and charged with two counts of obstruction of justice and two counts of unauthorized use of a computer.
The Edmonton Police Service (EPS) started an internal investigation in September 2016, and notified Alberta Justice and Solicitor General department’s director of law enforcement on Feb. 16, 2017, when it became clear criminal offences may have been committed.
“The EPS and our community rightfully hold our police officers to the highest standards. Any violation of these standards is completely unacceptable,” police Chief Rod Knecht said Wednesday.
Investigators allege Fald misrepresented the status of a police investigation, “leading to the imposition of a protection order against one of the parties.”
Fald was not involved in the police investigation in any official capacity, ASIRT said.
Fald then allegedly attempted to obstruct an Edmonton police professional standards investigation into his conduct and allegedly accessed two police information databases in the course of committing the offences, ASIRT said.
Police have removed Fald from duty without pay pending the outcome of the criminal charges and proceedings.
ASIRT executive director Sue Hughson said it’s uncommon for the watchdog group to lay criminal charges against officers, and that in most cases, ASIRT finds officers were acting lawfully and properly within the course of their duties.
Hughson said Wednesday since the matter is before the courts, she would not be elaborating on details.
“We also have to remember there is a family at the centre of this with a child involved, so I’m not going to get into the circumstances of this,” Hughson said.
The court proceedings involved an emergency protection order, Hughson said.
The investigation into Fald was lengthy because it involved an unco-operative witness, she said.
Fald recently worked on Project Watch, as well as the internet Child Exploitation Unit with the Alberta Law Enforcement Response Teams.
Fald was released on an undertaking with conditions to appear in provincial court March 16.
Sgt. Kevin Fald — shown here in 2013 — faces charges of obstruction of justice and unauthorized use of a computer in connection with his involvement in a 2016 family court case.