Provincial justice officials confirmed today that the RM of Whitehead police officer whose personal revolver was stolen last month is no longer on the job.
Chief Const. Doug Gormley said he had a .22 calibre revolver locked up in a case that was inside a police truck when that vehicle was stolen overnight between Jan. 11–12.
The revolver, Gormley has said, was his personal gun and not an official police firearm, albeit one that he said he used for occasional police-related duties that called for lesser amounts of firepower, like putting down injured animals that had been hit on the highways.
The stolen truck was quickly found abandoned, but the gun was only recovered about a week ago, after it was used in a bizarre accidental shooting that sent a woman to hospital with a bullet lodged in her buttocks. The gun had apparently discharged accidentally and fired through a wall before hitting the woman.
Gormley, who is the only member of the RM of Whitehead police service, has been suspended until further notice, although it's not known whether he will still be drawing pay.
The RCMP has stepped in to police the municipality in the meantime. They were already handling criminal and drug cases; this will add bylaw and traffic infractions to their load.
The RM itself continues to refuse comment.
The Brandon Police Service says that no charges have been laid at this time in connection with the storage of the gun. Gormley has previously told the Brandon Sun that although the gun was in a locked case, it didn't have a trigger lock on it, and that ammunition for the gun was kept in a jar, which was also in the police truck when it was stolen.
Police have laid charges against the man believed repsonsible for the accidental shooting.
In that case, Justin Marshall Lockyer, 29, has been charged with assault, careless use of a firearm, possession of a weapon obtained by crime, possession of a restricted firearm with ammunition and two counts of unauthorized possession of a firearm.
He’s also charged with breach of undertaking by failing to abstain from alcohol, intoxicants or drugs. He has not been charged in relation to the theft of the police truck.