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An adjudicator has ruled two Vancouver police officers were reckless in their use of force during a March 2016 wellness check.
Const. Eric Ludeman and Const. Neil Logan responded to a call at the home of Vladamir Tchaikoun on March 13, 2016. Tchaikoun said he was severely beaten by the officers when they forced themselves into his home.
Police said they were called because of a possible domestic assault, giving them a legal obligation to enter the home and ensure everyone is OK.
The Office of Police Complaint Commissioner adjudicator Carol Baird Ellan handed down her decision Thursday saying the allegations of unlawful entry were proven against Ludeman as, during a wellness check, there is no basis or authority for forced entry unless there are signs someone is in danger and needs immediate help.
“The actions of Const. Ludeman… are indicative of a cavalier willingness to intervene physically as a shortcut for other reasonably available investigative options,” Ellan said in a public hearing.
She added that any action taken by the officers after gaining entry is a reckless use of force. At any point, they could have used their words, or they could have removed themselves when they knew the wife wasn’t in danger.
The allegations of unlawful entry against Logan were not proven, as Ellan said he only entered the home after a struggle between Tchaikoun and his partner had already ensued.
Logan was found to have used a reckless use of force against Tchaikoun’s wife and son when they approached Logan during the incident and he told them to “stay back” and struck them.
Again, Ellan said he did not use alternative measures to resolve the situation.
The penalities for Ludeman and Logan still have to be determined.