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Mayerthorpe Mountie faces charges

A Mountie who was in command of the detachment in Mayerthorpe, Alta., on the day four officers were gunned down in 2005 faces unrelated criminal charges.

Sgt. Jim Martin of Spruce Grove, Alta., has been charged with two counts of fraud and two counts of breach of trust.

Martin is accused of using RCMP credit cards to buy personal items.

Insp. Gary Graham, Martin's detachment commander, said the charges against the 23-year veteran are tough on the RCMP community.

"You know we are frustrated and embarrassed because it is at two levels. He does have personal relationships with us, but he also has a public corporate relationship," Graham said Tuesday.

"These kind of allegations never sit well."

Martin has been suspended with pay pending resolution of the charges and faces an internal RCMP code of conduct investigation.

He was a corporal in charge of the Mayerthorpe detachment on March 3, 2005, when gunman James Roszko shot constables Peter Schiemann, Brock Myrol, Anthony Gordon and Leo Johnston.

Roszko killed himself with his own gun after being wounded by another RCMP officer.

In 2011, Martin told an inquiry into the officers' deaths that the RCMP knew that Roszko had violent tendencies. He also testified that he had no reservations about deploying the four men to the remote farm where they were shot.

Graham said Martin was to be promoted to the rank of inspector and transferred to Vancouver Island to take command of the Port Alberni RCMP detachment. He is originally from Nanaimo.

Graham said the promotion and transfer have been cancelled.

The Canadian Press


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