Transit cop charged in bar brawl, another faces charges for allegedly assaulting senior

Kent Spencer, Vancouver Province, Feb. 15, 2013

Vancouver transit police SkyTrain Canada Line goofs

Two Transit Police officers are facing charges for assault in two separate incidents, one involving an
off-duty bar brawl with a municipal police officer, and the other involving an alleged assault
against a 73-year-old patient at Surrey Memorial Hospital.
Photo: Richard Lam, Vancouver Sun

Transit Police defended the force’s reputation on Friday after more damaging information was revealed about officers’ misconduct.

Additional facts on cases involving two officers came to light. In one incident, Brian Lawson, faces charges of assaulting a police officer, while another officer, Ken Jansen, faces possible expulsion from the force.

The pair of developments followed up on a Feb. 8 story about an officer who was neglecting a police dog — the same unnamed who officer mistakenly left explosives aboard a plane two years ago.

Transit Police spokeswoman Anne Drennan said the latest cases should not reflect on the force as a whole.

“The cases from the past are now being dealt with,” she said. “Transit Police officers are accountable. This should indicate that’s the case.”

In the latest developments, Drennan said Lawson faces charges of assault on a police officer after an incident last September outside a New Westminster bar.

The Jansen development was revealed as a result of a tip uncovered by the Canadian Taxpayers Federation.

Drennan disclosed that on Feb. 12 Jansen was found by Transit Police’s disciplinary authority to have used excessive force and deceit, and was guilty of discreditable conduct.

He faces assault charges in the same incident, which occurred at Surrey Memorial Hospital in April, 2010. In that case, the alleged victim was a 73-year-old patient.

It goes to trial on Monday; an RCMP officer is also charged with a tasering-related offence in that case.

Regardless of the trial’s outcome, Drennan said Jansen faces disciplinary penalties up to and including dismissal.

The penalty will ultimately be determined by the Office of the Police Complaint Commissioner, she said.

Jansen has been suspended on full salary since Sept. 28, 2010.

His salary is not known, but the Taxpayers Federation says the average cop’s annual salary in 2011 was almost $98,000.

Lawson, meanwhile, was on sick leave at the time of the incident in the 500-block 7th Street on Sept. 12, 2012. He has resigned the force and is believed to be in Ireland.

His first court appearance is set for March 6 in New Westminster provincial court.

The officer involved in the lost explosives fiasco resigned the force before he could be fired.

Jordan Bateman, B.C. director of the taxpayers federation, said the series of foul-ups reflect badly on transit cops.

“These incidents reinforce the fact that Transit Police are a $27 million waste of money,” he said.

“Their reputation is taking hits all over. The organization should be wound down.”

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