Police officer dismissal to be heard by appeal court
Three officers have dismissals overturned by LERB
The case of an Alberta police officer who recently had his dismissal overturned by the Law Enforcement Review Board will be heard by the province’s highest court this week.
Const. Rob Furlong was fired for urinating on a fellow officer after a night of drinking.
The LERB ordered Edmonton Police to reinstate Furlong in December after finding that he didn’t deserve to lose his job over an incident the ruling characterized as horseplay that went "way too far."
Edmonton Police appealed the decision which will be heard by the Alberta Court of Appeal on Thursday.
Furlong isn’t the only officer who has had his dismissal overturned by the LERB.
In the past week, the board ruled that Camrose Police Const. Jeffrey MacDonald and Edmonton Police Const. Janice Fitzgerald didn’t deserve to lose their jobs.
The three disciplinary cases were heard by the same presiding officer.
Sgt. Tony Simioni, president of the Edmonton Police Association, believes the LERB is telling police departments that the punishments are too severe.
"The line should only be drawn when the employment relationship has been severed permanently, forever...due to a progressive series of disciplinary acts, not a singular incident where you had a lapse in judgement," he said.
MacDonald was dismissed from the Camrose Police Service last year after pleading guilty to eight disciplinary charges, including deceit and insubordination, for saying he missed only one day of a conference and seminar in Calgary, when he skipped two.
Fitzgerald was fired in October for lying about her affair with a superior officer, who she later married.
The LERB ruled last week that Fitzgerald should get her job back and instead receive a 40-hour suspension and a reprimand.
The Camrose and Edmonton Police Services can appeal those respective decisions.