Suicide of Vancouver police officer leads to investigation

Ever since she was a kid, Const. Nicole Chan wanted to serve and protect.

“She was just such a proud officer, she was proud of her work and she was proud of being able speak out for the victims,” sister Jenn Chan said.

After nine years with the Vancouver Police Department, Chan committed suicide in January.

Jenn Chan says her sister was struggling with anxiety and depression when she came forward in 2017 and a made a complaint to the police chief about inappropriate relationships with two senior officers.

“I believe that she felt pressured into it and she was not in a good mental state to basically tell them no,” Jenn said. “She felt like she couldn’t say no to them.”

After coming forward, Const. Chan was put on stress leave for the second time, Jenn said, adding that an internal investigation was launched against the two senior officers.

VPD spokesman Sgt. Jason Robillard said Thursday he couldn’t provide any information on the matter “due to privacy reasons.”

The Office of the Police Complaint Commissioner has also not commented because of privacy laws.

But in an email to Chan’s family, the office states the investigation into the actions of the first senior officer continues.

The email goes on to say the second senior officer was found to have engaged in “discreditable conduct” and received a 15-day suspension: five days “for failing to disclose to his managers a relationship” and 10 days “for entering into a relationship with Nicole knowing that she was in a vulnerable state mentally and emotionally.”

“I thought it was a joke,” Jenn Chan said. “I didn’t even know how to react, really, when I heard about that. I was shocked.”

In Jenn Chan’s opinion, the first officer should be fired. The second member has already resigned.

Chan says she is determined to find out the truth and whether the actions of the officers played a part in her sister’s suicide.

If you or someone you know is experiencing abuse or is involved in an abusive situation, please visit the Canadian Resource Centre for Victims of Crime for help. They are also reachable toll-free at 1-877-232-2610.

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