Winnipeg Free Press - PRINT EDITION

Retired inner-city principal appointed to police board

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THE province has appointed retired inner-city principal Angeline Ramkissoon to Winnipeg's new police board and will adopt some new guidelines for background checks on board members.

Ramkissoon is the retired principal of Wellington School and a veteran of inner-city education.

She replaces Louise Simbandumwe, who raised concerns over whether it was a conflict of interest to ask Winnipeg police to conduct background checks on civilians appointed to its oversight board.

That prompted Justice Minister Andrew Swan to ask Manitoba Police Commissioner chairman Rick Linden to clarify the guidelines governing background checks.

In a brief report completed earlier this month, Linden said board members should undergo a criminal-record check, a child-abuse and adult abuse-registry screen, reference checks and a "local indices" check of area police files.

Linden also said board members can ask for those checks to be done by an outside police force, preferably the RCMP.

Aboriginal leader Leslie Spillett is the province's other appointee to the Winnipeg Police Board.

Simbandumwe has since taken a different provincial appointment.

The Winnipeg Police Board, chaired by Coun. Scott Fielding, is one of 11 municipal police boards set up by the province in the wake of the botched police investigation into the 2005 death of Crystal Taman, who was killed when an off-duty officer rear-ended her at a red light.

Republished from the Winnipeg Free Press print edition August 2, 2013 A7

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