News

Conditional discharge means cop’s sentence unlisted

A Richmond RCMP officer who was involved in a hit-and-run collision on Highway 17 in Delta two years ago, won’t have his name appear on a public database because he was handed a conditional discharge.

RCMP Cpl. Tony Bernard, whose full name is Antonious Alexander Bernard, received a conditional discharge, a one-year driving ban, a one-year term of probation and a $1,500 victim surcharge after pleading guilty to one count of dangerous driving.

The other charges against him—impaired driving, refusing to provide a breath sample and failing to stop at an accident scene—were stayed.

A curious reader of The Richmond Review questioned late last month why there’d been no follow-up to the original story, and a search of Court Services Online’s website, a public database of criminal and traffic court cases, came up empty.

On Monday, The Richmond Review received an explanation from CSO Support.

“The principles governing access policy balance the right of the public to transparency in the administration of justice with the right of the individual to privacy. In keeping with the legislative and policy requirements, the following criminal court records do not appear on the Court Services Online site: youth matters, convictions resulting in a pardon or record suspension, charges resulting in a stay or discharge, files sealed by order of the court,” CSO Support wrote in an e-mail. “The application of the legislative, court rule and judicial policy requirements directed by the judiciary is applied at a system level on Court Services Online and not applied at an individual case level.”

Bernard was stopped by a Delta police officer after a complaint from a driver who’d been sideswiped on Sept. 15, 2011. The complainant managed to jot down the car’s licence plate and follow it until police arrived.

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