- A Montreal police officer has just racked up his 10th ethics violation in 25 years of service with the SPVM, this time for insulting a Muslim man.
- He now has over 50 days worth of suspensions and has been taken out of his position as a traffic safety officer due to his problem communicating with the public.
Montreal police officer Éric Locas has been suspended for making insulting religious comments in what marks the 10th ethics violation* in his 25 years of service for the SPVM, according to the Montreal Gazette. A report by CJAD News only counts four former suspensions,* and the Police Ethics Committee of Quebec only has digital copies of three cases available on its site, though Locas is cited in at least four other cases as precedent.
In his most recent infraction, the Police Ethics Committee of Quebec details the routine traffic stop of a Mr. Abdelkrim Rahal, who was pulled over on avenue Papineau by Locas in February of 2017.
First, Locas greeted Rahal by saying, "Shalom," and then explained that he was being pulled over for not having his headlights on.
Rahal explained that he didn't believe he needed them, considering the sun was already up. Locas then took out his cellphone and said they would take a look at the MétéoMédia phone app to see when the sun was coming up that day.
Then, according to Mr. Rahal's testimony, he explained, "I do not need a cell phone to know at what time the sun rises," explaining that he does his morning prayers with the rising of the sun, before leaving his home in the morning.
Locas then replied to Rahal, « Je me fous de ta prière, » or "I don't care about your prayers."
He did not issue an infraction against Rahal after checking his papers. After the interaction, Rahal requested Locas' name. Locas asked why, and Rahal explained that he was going to make a complaint.
According to his testimony, Rahal says Locas then responded, « Vous autres, vous chialez pour un rien, » or "You people, you cry over nothing."
In another incident that happened in 2016, which also ended in suspension for Locas last year, Locas again pulled over a woman for not having her headlights on.
After pulling over Madame Nacéra Ziane, Locas asked her several times when she turned off her headlights. She then testified that Locas eventually asked her, "Are you deaf?" A statement which Ziane felt was nasty and insulting.
Locas then issued an infraction against her, but instead of handing it to Ziane he put it under her windshield wiper, causing Ziane to have to exit her vehicle where she feared for her safety due to the fast-moving traffic.
Several months later, Ziane decided to issue a complaint against officer Locas.
After learning of the complaint, Locas then took it upon himself to call Ziane directly at her home.
She was not home when the voicemail was first heard by her daughter, who told her there was a message from the police waiting for her. Ziane explained that when she finally listened to it she was "panicked and freaked out," realizing it was Locas.
She mentions she was also scared because she didn't know how Locas would have had her phone number.
In both of these cases and several others, Locas was suspended for up to 25 days in some cases.
This most recent incident has him up to 58 days of suspensions for his various breaches of the Code of Ethics.
According to the Gazette, Locas has stopped working as a traffic safety officer, due to the "constant interaction with the public."
Now, he checks prisoners into the police station.
*This article has been updated.