September 13, 2023 

Vancouver, B.C. — Below is a statement from Jeff Swann, Board Director, Pacific North Region of the National Police Federation, in response to an evolving story about a high-risk and ultimately fatal interaction between RCMP officers and a man following reports of a stolen vehicle and other criminal activity, in Revelstoke on August 27, 2023:   

“RCMP Members are highly trained to de-escalate high-risk situations, which is always their preference. Less than 1/10th of 1% of police calls result in any use-of-force. Based on the description of this situation, Members would have had split seconds to make a decision based on the behaviours and risks they observed and experienced. Their primary consideration must be to protect the lives of the public and police officers.  

The Independent Investigations Office will now review and determine if Revelstoke Members’ actions were appropriate in the circumstances. 

One thing I am sure of is that these dedicated and professional officers did not want to be in the situation they were forced into: no one starts a shift expecting or hoping for a fatal incident. Loss of life related to police interactions is always tragic for everyone impacted, including the involved police officers. 

It’s therefore critically important that everyone, including the news media and those impacted, respect and protect the ongoing independent investigation without pre-supposing and/or speculating on the motives and actions of the deceased young man or the police. It’s also important, in balance, to reiterate that this situation involved theft of a vehicle and avoidance of police. 

As a result of years of underfunding of social services here by all levels of government many people have become marginalized. Police officers are increasingly called to respond to resulting incidents involving people whose behaviours and actions endanger public and police officer safety. 

Police officers put their lives on the line every shift and deserve to go home to their own families. They also deserve our thanks and respect for all they do to keep their communities safe.”  

About the National Police Federation:  

The National Police Federation (NPF) represents ~20,000 RCMP Members serving across Canada and internationally. It is the largest police labour relations organization in Canada and second largest in North America. We are focused on improving public safety in Canada for our Members and all Canadians by advocating for investment in policing and other related supports and services. This includes calling for required resourcing, equipment, and supports to enhance community safety and livability in the communities we serve, large and small, across Canada.  

For more information:  

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Media contacts:  

Fabrice de Dongo                                                                   
Manager, Media Relations                                                   
[email protected]                                                      
(647) 274-7118   

Sarah Kavanagh
Coordinator, Media Relations
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(604) 842-6864