Acting police chief in Thunder Bay, Ont., named after suspension of longtime head
Supt. Dan Taddeo appointed, effective today, as Sylvie Hauth faces misconduct allegations
In the wake of multiple suspensions and ongoing investigations, the Thunder Bay Police Service (TBPS) in northwestern Ontario will have a new interim leader.
Supt. Dan Taddeo has been appointed acting police chief, according to a news release Monday afternoon.
The announcement comes a week after Chief Sylvie Hauth was suspended following news the Ontario Civilian Police Commission (OCPC), a provincial watchdog agency, would hold a hearing into "serious allegations" of misconduct. Earlier, Hauth had announced she would retire in June 2023. A date for the misconduct hearing has not yet been set.
The appointment of an interim chief "will ensure operational continuity as the board undertakes a comprehensive process to recruit a permanent chief of police to the [TBPS]," the news release said.
Taddeo had been serving as acting deputy chief of the service since February, when Deputy Chief Ryan Hughes was suspended by the oversight board pending an internal investigation. Taddeo has been a member of the TBPS since 1988.
The decision to name Taddeo as acting chief was made by Malcolm Mercer, a Toronto-based lawyer who was appointed by the OCPC in April to be the administrator of the police services board. Mercer was given the authority to make decisions on behalf of the board for at least six months while the OCPC continues their investigation.
As acting chief, Taddeo will have to deal with many outstanding issues.
Ontario Provincial Police (OPP) have spent months on an investigation into alleged criminal activity by unnamed members of the police service. There are more than 20 human rights complaints against the TBPS leadership and oversight board that were filed by current and former officers and civilian employees of the service.
Leaders representing two-thirds of the First Nations in Ontario have also called for the disbandment of the TBPS. That came after a confidential report sent to the provincial attorney general called for the reinvestigation of 14 Indigenous deaths in Thunder Bay because of deficiencies in the original investigations.
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The same report, written by a blended team of investigators, also called for an external audit of the police's entire records management system because of concerns of systemic issues in the keeping of records.
Police have reported eight homicides already this year, the majority of them in the last two months.