City councillor under OPP investigation over election issue
OPP looking into issue involving Coun. Tim Tierney after complaint from political opponent
- Coun. Tim Tierney told reporters on Monday he would not comment on the issue.
The OPP's anti-rackets branch is investigating Coun. Tim Tierney after a complaint was made against him by his political opponent in the upcoming municipal election.
Tierney is stepping back from his position on the Ottawa Police Services Board while the investigation unfolds.
Late Friday, the provincial police force's spokesperson Staff Sgt. Carolle Dionne confirmed the investigation, which was first reported by the Ottawa Citizen.
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"Members of our anti-rackets branch are currently investigating the matter involving the municipal elections. As this investigation is still in the preliminary stages, we can't speak to the specifics at this time," she said in an email to CBC.
CBC reached out to Tierney several times on Friday evening, but did not receive a response before publication.
Before a library board meeting on Tuesday, Tierney said he would not be commenting on the issue.
"There is a process that is in place, and again at the advice of my lawyer, we will let that play out at this time."
Tierney is running for re-election in the Beacon Hill-Cyrville ward and initially it appeared he would be unchallenged. However, Michael Schurter signed up to run moments before candidate registration closed on July 27 at 2 p.m.
Schurter said Tierney spoke to him by phone just before the withdrawal deadline
"Based on Tim's conduct during that call I filed a report to the authorities," he said. "Since this matter is currently being investigated by the OPP, I have no further comments at this time."
Chief Charles Bordeleau said Ottawa police received a complaint and referred it to the OPP.
"As a result of a potential conflict of interest, we requested that the OPP take the file and it has assigned an investigator."
Bordeleau said police consulted board chair Coun. Eli El-Chantiry on the issue who agreed it should be handled by the OPP.
Councillor recused himself from board
The Ottawa police had a potential conflict investigating Tierney because the councillor sits on the board that oversees the police. Tierney has been a member of the police services board since his re-election in 2014.
On Friday afternoon, Tierney recused himself from the board, El-Chantiry confirmed. He said that Tierney gave no reason why he was stepping away from his role.
However, other city hall sources told CBC the Beacon Hill-Cyrville incumbent is the subject of the OPP investigation and that OPP officers had begun to make inquiries of city officials.
Election day is Oct. 22.
With files from Joanne Chianello and Matthew Kupfer