Bad apples innocent until proven guilty
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May 21, 2014  |  Vote 0    0

Bad apples innocent until proven guilty

Ancaster News

John Vickers, Hamilton

Re: Police should toss bad apples from force,  (May 1 Letter).

While I sympathize with the feeling that the appropriate solution to bad apples is to toss them, a core precept of our society is “one is innocent until proven guilty.”

A complaint or even admission of guilt is not sufficient.

Anyone in a position of power like a police officer — who may have to make decisions that displease some people — may be subject to unfounded claims of misbehaviour by an unhappy person. It is the stance of our society that the person must be protected until it is proven the claim or charge is valid.

The process of assessment of the situation in cases of claims against police officers appears to be excessively slow.

Rather than asking that the officer be summarily discharged, we should be demanding the process be examined and made more efficient and less subject to apparently wanton delays.

This would be fairer to the innocent officer whose life is put on hold and the complainants in cases that officers have behaved inappropriately. In this case, the cliché, “Justice delayed is justice denied” may be appropriate.


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