The BC Coroners Service has ordered an autopsy in the case of a pregnant B.C. RCMP officer’s apparent suicide.
It comes after Global News reported concerns raised by Richmond RCMP Const. Jasmine Thiara’s family about the mysterious circumstances surrounding her death.
Vancouver police officers found Thiara dead on the evening of Feb. 21 on Richmond’s Moray Bridge from a single gunshot wound to the head.
Martin Peters, the lawyer representing Thiara’s family, said they learned new details about the case during a meeting with the coroner Friday, but that much information could not be shared due to the multiple investigations now underway into her death.
Peters did reveal that Thiara was actually four weeks pregnant at the time of her death, not 14 weeks as previously reported, a discrepancy he said was due to a “clerical error.”
Thiara’s family believed her fetus was ectopic, meaning the pregnancy was not viable, however Peters now says it was too early to determine that.
Dawn Roberts, director of communications for the BC RCMP, also revealed Friday that an investigation is underway into allegations of an inappropriate relationship between Thiara and her supervisor.
“Any time you have a senior officer in a relationship with a junior officer, you have a power imbalance,” Peters said.
“It’s particularly troubling when that is a situation we have seen with officers like (Vancouver police Const.) Nicole Chan, as to how women can successfully complete a career in the RCMP without being a part of a class action suit, without having PTSD, without quitting.”
Chan died by suicide in 2019, two years after reporting inappropriate relationships with two senior officers.
Along with the coroners service and the RCMP, B.C.’s civilian police watchdog the Independent Investigations Office is probing Thiara’s death, which it says appears to be a suicide.
The IIO said Friday it hopes to have an update on the case next week.
Thiara’s family is pressing for a coroners’ inquest, which it hopes could answer some of the lingering questions about how and why she died.
“There are still a lot of questions here around how the police got involved, who called 911, what was the response, what were (Vancouver police) doing there, why were they the first responders,” Peters said.
“The who, what, where and why still remains outstanding.”
— With files from Rumina Daya