Police step up south-end road checks

“Our members are doing a really good job of being out there, being proactive…” — Sgt. Terry Gillespie

Aside from deer, drivers saw a lot more roadside police checks between Tlell and Queen Charlotte this spring.

Speaking to Queen Charlotte council last week, RCMP Sergeant Terry Gillespie said with a full seven-member staff, the detachment is boosting efforts to stop impaired driving.

More road checks are the main reason why Queen Charlotte RCMP handled 249 service calls this April to June, compared with just 199 calls during the same period last year.

At that time, the detachment had just two members on staff.

“Our members are doing a really good job of being out there, being proactive, making sure we’re not just reacting and that we’re targeting the issues that are affecting our community,” said Gillespie, noting that officers also recommended criminal charges in 25 cases this spring, 15 more than last year.

Of all the service calls, 58 were related to abuse of drugs and alcohol, which the Queen Charlotte RCMP list as a top priority along with building community relations and enhancing road safety.

Gillespie said the area has seen no increase either in violent crime or property crime.

Mayor Greg Martin and others thanked the officers for leading the recent Hospital Day parade, hosting a community barbecue, and for mentoring local youth.

Queen Charlotte councillors also voted to support Sgt. Gillespie’s proposal to start a naval cadets program in the south end.