Edmonton police sergeant charged with obstruction of justice

An Edmonton police sergeant has been charged with two counts of obstruction of justice for allegedly interfering in a court hearing in a case with which he had no official connection, ASIRT said Wednesday in a news release.

24-year veteran officer also faces two counts of unauthorized use of a police service computer

Det. Kevin Falds, shown here in 2011, is charged with two counts of obstruction of justice and two counts of unauthorized use of a police service computer. (CBC)

An Edmonton police sergeant has been charged with two counts of obstruction of justice for allegedly interfering in a court hearing held in a case with which he had no official connection, ASIRT said Wednesday in a news release.

Sgt. Kevin Fald has also been charged with two counts of unauthorized use of a police service computer. 

On Sept. 9, 2016, Fald attended an emergency protection order hearing at family court in Edmonton, ASIRT said.

"It is alleged that Fald misrepresented the status of a police investigation, leading to the imposition of a protection order against one of the parties," the ASIRT news release said. "Fald was not involved in this police investigation in any official capacity."

Fald also allegedly tried to obstruct an EPS professional standards investigation into his conduct, ASIRT said, and improperly accessed two police information databases "in the course of committing these offences."

Officer held to 'highest standards,' chief says

Fald has been employed with the Edmonton Police Service for 24 years, the department said in its own news release. 

"The EPS and our community rightfully hold our police officers to the highest standards," police Chief Rod Knecht said in a statement. "Any violation of these standards is completely unacceptable."

The police service said after it became aware of Fald's alleged involvement in the September 2016 family court hearing, it "immediately" initiated an internal investigation.

The news release did not say when EPS became aware of the matter.

"As the investigation proceeded, it became apparent that criminal offences may also have been committed by Sgt. Fald," the police service said.

ASIRT took over investigation

The EPS notified Alberta Justice on Feb. 16, 2017, and the next day the Alberta Serious Incident Response Team took over the criminal investigation. 

When that independent investigation was completed, the file was forwarded to the Alberta Crown Prosecution Service.

After reviewing the investigation and the Crown opinion, ASIRT determined there were "reasonable grounds" to believe offences had been committed.

Fald has been removed from duty without pay, pending the outcome of the criminal charges and proceedings related to the police service regulations, the EPS news release said.

He scheduled to appear in Edmonton provincial court on March 16.