RCMP de­tach­ment back in Bay Roberts

Bay Roberts, Har­bour Grace now sep­a­rate de­tach­ments

The Compass - - FRONT PAGE - BY AN­DREW ROBIN­SON edi­tor@CB­N­com­pass.ca

As of the be­gin­ning of April, Trin­ity Con­cep­tion RCMP is no more, with both Har­bour Grace and Bay Roberts now op­er­at­ing as their own de­tach­ments. Com­mu­nity lead­ers gath­ered at the Bay Roberts de­tach­ment last week to help cel­e­brate the new ar­ran­age­ment and to check out what’s be­ing done at the build­ing to ac­com­mo­date the change.

Bay Roberts and Har­bour Grace now have sep­a­rate de­tach­ments fol­low­ing a re­or­ga­ni­za­tion of the for­mer Trin­ity Con­cep­tion RCMP ser­vice.

In the mid-1990s, the RCMP amal­ga­mated lo­cal de­tach­ments across the prov­ince to form 11 new polic­ing dis­tricts. The Trin­ity Con­cep­tion de­tach­ment came into ex­is­tence as a re­sult, with of­fices in Bay Roberts and Har­bour Grace used to serve a re­gional po­lice unit ever since.

A re­view started in the fall of 2013 to look at the state of the Trin­ity Con­cep­tion de­tach­ment. Ac­cord­ing to Supt. Jamie Zet­tler, east­ern dis­trict di­rec­tor for the RCMP’s B di­vi­sion in New­found­land and Labrador, the po­lice force rec­og­nized chang­ing de­mo­graph­ics in the area and was aware specif­i­cally of Bay Roberts in­ter­est in hav­ing its own de­tach­ment.

Af­ter re­view­ing a re­port, the RCMP’s B di­vi­sion de­cided a year later that the Bay Roberts satel­lite of­fice would re­open as its own de­tach­ment. Fol­low­ing a one-year tran­si­tional pe­riod, the Bay Roberts de­tach­ment be­came op­er­a­tional as of April 1.

“That work has led to a smooth tran­si­tion, en­sur­ing pub­lic safety is not com­pro­mised,” said Zet­tler.

Bay Roberts Mayor Philip Wood was pleased to be at the lo­cal de­tach­ment last Wed­nes­day, where a small gath­er­ing took place to show com­mu­nity lead­ers around the of­fice. He and other mem­bers of the town coun­cil ad­vo­cated for years to see the Bay Roberts de­tach­ment re­turn.

“A re­gional con­cept was tried and had some suc­cess, how­ever, it has been rec­og­nized that full­time, stand­alone or in­de­pen­dent de­tach­ments … have far greater ad­van­tages than the re­gional model,” said the mayor.

Har­bour Grace-Port de Grave MHA Pam Par­sons said the re­turn of the Bay Roberts de­tach­ment was long awaited and wel­come.

“As we know, so­ci­ety evolves, and un­for­tu­nately crimes evolve as well and they be­come more so­phis­ti­cated,” said Par­sons.

Sgt. Richard Marshall will be in charge at the Bay Roberts de­tach­ment, while Sgt. Howard Gale will be Har­bour Grace’s com­mand­ing of­fi­cer.

With the re­or­ga­ni­za­tion, of­fi­cers will be as­signed to spe­cific de­tach­ments in­stead of mov­ing be­tween the two sites. Some ren­o­va­tions at the Bay Roberts de­tach­ment will con­tinue over the next lit­tle while, with an elec­tronic fin­ger­print sys­tem due to be in­stalled shortly.

De­spite the change, the two de­tach­ments will main­tain close ties. Pris­on­ers will be held in the Har­bour Grace de­tach­ment, while for­mer cells in Bay Roberts will be re­pur­posed. When nec­es­sary, staff from both de­tach­ments will work col­lab­o­ra­tively to deal with cases, ac­cord­ing to Marshall.

Peo­ple look­ing to reach the Har­bour Grace de­tach­ment can call 596-5014, while Bay Roberts of­fi­cers can be con­tacted at 786-2118.

AN­DREW ROBIN­SON PHO­TOS/THE COM­PASS

Sev­eral guests were on hand last Wed­nes­day to rec­og­nize the re­turn of the Bay Roberts RCMP de­tach­ment, in­clud­ing, from the left, Sgt. Richard Marshall, Bay Roberts Mayor Philip Wood, Har­bour Grace-Port-de-Grave MHA Pam Par­sons, Har­bour Grace Mayor Terry Barnes, and Supt. Jamie Zet­tler, east­ern dis­trict di­rec­tor for the RCMP’s B di­vi­sion in New­found­land and Labrador.

Sgt. Richard Marshall, right, chats with Har­bour GracePort de Grave MHA Pam Par­sons at the Bay Roberts RCMP de­tach­ment.

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