Caught on video: Kelowna cop accused of distracted driving pulls over accuser
WATCH: Kelowna RCMP has launched an internal investigation after one of its members pulled over a motorist who accused the Mountie of distracted driving. The exchange was caught on tape.
KELOWNA — Kelowna RCMP Superintendent Nick Romanchuk has launched an internal investigation after one of his members was videotaped pulling over a motorist.
The car was driven by a woman. The vehicle’s passenger, Shawn Michealz from Edmonton, shot the video and says the officer pulled him over after he made a gesture to the officer. On camera, the officer admits he was distracted.
Michaelz posted the video to Facebook on July 27 and it has now been viewed more than 130,000 times.
“We are waiting to turn left at an intersection with our signal light on and a cop is approaching us in the oncoming lane very slowly. We had enough time to make the turn at the speed he was going, but he had the right of way, of course, so we waited and at the last second he turns left,” Michaelz wrote on Facebook.
“I throw my hands up in the air in the passenger seat of the vehicle and the cop gets mad and pulls a U-turn in the intersection to pull us over.”
In the video, as the officer approaches the vehicle, the female driver asks why she was pulled over.
“Anytime someone is going to go like that to a police officer they are obviously upset about something,” said the officer.
“Go like what?” the driver responds.
“I am doing my job, I am looking for a licence plate and I look down at my screen and I may have lost track of where I was on the road. Fair enough, that is my job as a police officer.”
When Michaelz suggests what the police officer did could be considered distracted driving, the officer responds by threatening to call a traffic officer to do a full vehicle inspection.
“Well we will have a look at your paint job, your rims, make sure they are high enough from the ground.”
The driver then asks the officer if he was picking on them to which he says: “No, not at all…. At this point I am making sure your car is roadworthy.”
“If you are going to try and do that to uniformed police cars expect that response,” the officer said.
At one point in the two-and-half-minute video, the RCMP officer tells the driver and Michaelz: “In 20 years of doing the job I don’t get mad and you were able to make me mad.”
It’s not clear if the driver and/or Michaelz were ticketed after being pulled over.
The video is generating a lot of attention on social media and for the Kelowna RCMP detachment.
Superintendent Romanchuk says he’s looking into it.
“I have concerns with the video I have seen and have ordered an investigation to gather the full circumstances to determine whether or not the actions of the officer were appropriate.”
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