Quebec police dismantle their GRIPP unit

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La police de Qué bec dismantles its GRIPP unit

Police officers from the GRIPP unit during an intervention at the Portofino restaurant, in Sainte-Foy, in the fall of 2021.

The Service de police de la Ville de Qu├ębec (SPVQ) puts the ax in its unit assigned to the surveillance of bars. Radio-Canada has learned that the twenty officers of this specialized unit will return to patrols on November 12.

The Police Relations and Intervention Group with the Population (GRIPP) will basically be split in two. According to our information, a small team specializing in criminal intelligence will be created and attached to the Investigations Department. However, there is no indication that it will be the current GRIPP agents who will be assigned to it.

A security service specializing in monitoring bars, restaurants and more turbulent areas will only be maintained for a few months a year, especially during holiday periods. For the moment, it will be the police officers assigned to the patrols who will be entrusted with this mandate.

The SPVQ has not confirmed our information, contenting itself with saying that the mandate of the GRIPP unit is still being reassessed.

Currently, we cannot announce the revised structure, since an agreement is still in talks with the union party in order to set up a high-performance team with [specialized] personnel, replied by email David Pelletier, spokesperson. of the SPVQ.

The Brotherhood of Police Officers of Quebec City did not wish to comment on our information.

Three screenshots of a video showing a strong intervention by the SPVQ.

The GRIPP had been plunged into turmoil a year ago. Videos that showed particularly strong interventions by some of its agents had shocked Internet users. One of the police officers involved, Jacob Picard, also appeared on Wednesday at the Quebec courthouse. He pleaded not guilty to charges of assault and assault causing bodily harm.

It was following the release of these videos that the SPVQ has initiated a reflection to review the mandate of this unit. However, still according to our information, the bad press about the GRIPP squad is not the only reason for its dismantling. The police officers' work schedules and overexposure to sometimes belligerent clienteles were also beginning to pose a problem.

The SPVQ had been juggling various scenarios for several months to redirect the mandate of its squad. A pilot project was also carried out during the summer period. New officers received training and joined the GRIPP team at the beginning of the summer, said David Pelletier.

With the collaboration of ;Alexandre Duval

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