Supt. Brian Dowden remains confident in the flow of confidential information and investigations at the Corner Brook Royal Newfoundland Constabulary.
The trust in his employees — civilian and officers — remains strong, despite the charges against one of the force’s civilian employees alleging she released information about a drug investigation identifying its targets.
Dowden reinforced the public should not waver in its trust of the department as information of the charges against Angela Marie McCarthy, 31, becomes known. He held a press conference at the RNC headquarters this morning to address questions that came to light after McCarthy’s first court appearance in Corner Brook Tuesday.
The allegations from August of last year are that the Benoit’s Cove woman released information pertaining to an ongoing drug investigation. The investigation — Operation Backstop — resulted in the arrest of two Benoit’s Cove men, Terrence Gallant and Bruce Hickey, and two Ontario men, Jean-Paul Mandoux and Andre Seguin.
McCarthy, who no longer works at the RNC, was charged with obstruction of justice. She made her first appearance in provincial court in Corner Brook Tuesday. The matter was set over until July 8.
Dowden said many of the details of the manner to which the employee released the information and how police discovered it is evidence before the court. He did expand somewhat, saying the information would have been obtained through the course of her regular employment and police learned of the breach independent from the original drug investigation.
According to court documents, McCarthy released the information between Aug. 9-20, 2013.
Dowden said his role is to ensure the protection of privacy within the RNC, thus deemed the alleged crime as a serious one. He said the appropriate actions were taken internally and criminally.
“I can’t stress enough that we take the protection of privacy and confidentiality of our information very seriously, and we take great emphasis and great strides in protecting it,” he said.
The Corner Brook division has 10 civilian staff and Dowden said the allegations do not raise any doubt in the system of employing such individuals. He said he places the same level of trust in his civilian staff as his police officers.