Calgary Coun. Gian-Carlo Carra is under investigation by Edmonton police following a recent, alleged road rage incident and has stepped away from his role on the police commission.
Calgary Police Service confirmed they were made aware of the incident and “in the interest of transparency and best practices, we have reached out to the Edmonton Police Service to request they lead an independent investigation of the circumstances.”
An EPS spokesperson said they received the referral from their Calgary counterparts.
“As the referral was just recently received and the investigation is in its infancy there is no additional information that can be shared at this time,” Edmonton police said in an email to Global News.
“I can’t confirm or comment on anything at this point,” Carra, who represents Ward 9, told Global News. He said he would have more to say in the near future.
The Calgary Police Commission also confirmed Carra has voluntarily stepped back from his role on the civilian oversight body “while he addresses a personal matter.”
“His position is currently being held for him, but he will not be participating in any meetings or able to access any confidential commission information until the matter is resolved,” a commission spokesperson said.
MRU political scientist Lori Williams lauded Carra’s decision to step away from the police commission and the Calgary police to have Edmonton police take over the investigation, “to remove any possible questions about bias or inappropriate involvement.”
Williams explained questions about Carra’s involvement in city council and committees could be raised, depending on what information comes to light.
“If the investigation yields information that supports conclusions about inappropriate conduct on the part of a councillor, then more serious questions need to be asked about the kinds of involvement they have on council,” she said.
“And we see this, of course, before with respect to Coun. Chu, when information came to light about inappropriate behaviour when he acted as a police officer.”
The MRU professor said it can be a political quagmire when elected officials become involved with police investigations.
“On the one hand, constituents want to be represented. On the other, we want our elected officials to not only behave in ways that are appropriate, be seen to be behaving in ways that are just and appropriate,” Williams said.
“And so this sort of cloud over Coun. Carra is certainly making things awkward.”
–with files from Adam MacVicar, Global News