A relative of one of the RCMP members killed during the June 4 shootings in Moncton says he's disappointed with the responses to his questions about the rollout of carbine rifles at the Codiac RCMP.
Charlie Goguen, the father-in-law of Const. Doug Larche, raised questions at the last meeting of the Codiac Regional Policing Authority (CRPA) on Dec. 14 about money set aside for the purchase of carbines.
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At the authority's meeting Thursday night, Goguen was provided with three written responses.
"The answers I got tonight ... they're not worth the paper they're written on. They didn't really answer my questions that I had, they're kind of dismissing me, I think," Goguen said.
Questions about funding and purchase
A carbine is a semi-automatic, short-barrelled rifle that has a longer and more accurate range than a pistol or shotgun.
Goguen asked about funds that were designated by the authority in 2011 and granted for subsequent years for carbine rollout and training.
"The CRPA approved use of non-budgeted funds for carbines in February of 2012. These funds were subsequently used in the purchase of carbines and training for them," was the written response from authority chairman Charles Leger.
Goguen also asked when the rifles were purchased after the money was distributed to the authority and the RCMP.
"The funds were allocated for the 2012-13 fiscal year and training in the subsequent 3 years. The first 3 carbines were purchased in March 2013 (within the 2012-13 fiscal year) and another 3 carbines were purchased in March 2014," states the written response.
Goguen also asked who in the RCMP stopped the rollout of the carbines when the funds were made available.
The written response says that matter was dealt with "in a court of law in 2017," referring to the court case involving the RCMP. The force was found guilty under the Labour Code in September 2017 for not providing proper training and equipment, including carbines, to officers that could have potentially helped prevent some of the carnage on June 4, 2014.
Gunman Justin Bourque was carrying a semi-automatic rifle, and the RCMP officers who responded were armed with their duty pistols.
Witnesses at the trial suggested that being better armed could have prevented some of the officers' deaths.
More questions than answers
Goguen says the authority's response left him with more questions than answers.
"There's still a lot of things to answer and I want to be here basically to help others, that's my goal," he said. "I don't want anyone to go through what our family's gone through, what the spouses of the members, police forces and the children and the families go through. It's not fun."
After the meeting ended, Supt. Tom Critchlow of the Codiac Regional Police said he couldn't say much about the matter because it is still before the courts.
The court will hand down a sentence for the Labour Code conviction on Jan. 26.
Critchlow says there are now 39 carbines at the detachment and the majority of members are trained to use them.
"We've purchased enough carbines that there's enough for those that work everyday and for those that are trained, they have them and they're available," Critchlow said.
But Goguen said he's not satisfied with the answers received.
"Deflect, deflect, deflect that's all I can tell you," he said.