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RCMP officer charged after pepper spray used in arrest on Halloween

A file photo of an RCMP badge. File / Global News

A constable has been charged with assault with a weapon following an arrest on Halloween 2020, according to the Saskatchewan RCMP.

The charge stems from a complaint after Carlyle RCMP officers stopped a vehicle in Arcola, Sask., to conduct an Alcohol, Gaming and Regulations Act investigation, according to a press release.

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Police said during an interaction with an occupant of the vehicle, a man, pepper spray was used by Const. Dani Zaya.

A complaint was made to Carlyle RCMP on Nov. 18, 2020, and an investigation was started by the RCMP south district management team, according to the release.

Police said the investigation was completed on Feb. 12, 2021, and after consultation with Crown prosecution, Zaya was charged and arrested on June 23 and released on conditions.

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“Complaints such as the one received in relation to the above incident are taken seriously and thoroughly investigated,” Saskatchewan RCMP commanding officer Rhonda Blackmore said in a statement on Friday.

“The Saskatchewan RCMP has previously committed that if RCMP officers are criminally charged, we will be transparent and notify the public. This is one such example.”

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RCMP said Zaya was suspended with pay since the investigation began and currently still is. They added he was on administrative duties until Jan. 20, at which time he ceased working.

Zaya is scheduled to appear in Carlyle provincial court on July 14.

Arcola is roughly 185 km southeast of Regina.

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