Suit: UBCO student claims Kelowna RCMP officer assaulted her

Police brutality lawsuit filed

A nursing student at the University of B.C. Okanagan campus has filed a lawsuit against the Kelowna RCMP over alleged police brutality. 

The student, who Castanet News has agreed to not name, alleges in a lawsuit filed in B.C. Supreme Court this week she was at her home under “mental distress” on Jan. 20 when her boyfriend contacted police and requested a health check.

Attending RCMP officer Const. Lacey Browning entered the apartment and found the woman lying on the bathroom floor in a state of semi-consciousness, the lawsuit claims.

“The plaintiff was not a danger to Browning, nor did the plaintiff act in a manner that would cause Browning to be in fear for her safety,” the suit says.

The civil claim alleges Const. Browning failed to introduce herself as RCMP and did not make any attempt to assess the student’s need for medical attention, instead ordering her to stand. 

“The plaintiff could not stand on her own, and therefore, the plaintiff did not respond to Browning’s commands,” the suit says. 

The claim alleges Browning stepped on the students arm and kicked her in the stomach while she was down, assaulting her while shouting “stop being dramatic” and “control your [expletive] dog, don’t make me hurt him.”

The plaintiff was then handcuffed and dragged through the apartment on her stomach, causing injury to the student’s face, upper thigh and torso.

“Browning dragged the plaintiff to the elevator while punching the plaintiff in her face,” the lawsuit continues. “The plaintiff suffered bruises to the face, broken blood vessels to the left eye, swollen right eye, and bruising to the right temple.”

The student was taken to Kelowna General Hospital where, the suit claims, Browning misled hospital staff by telling them the student was high on meth. 

“The plaintiff has never used methamphetamine or any illicit drugs,” the lawsuit claims. “The toxicology report from KGH showed that at the time the plaintiff was admitted, she had no illegal drugs in her body or blood.”

The lawsuit seeks a variety of damages, calling Const. Browning’s actions “abusive and repetitive in the extreme” that resulted in mental and physical injury.

The lawsuit also names the Attorney General of Canada and B.C. Minister of Public Safety and Solicitor General. None of the defendants have filed a response. The RCMP typically does not comment on matters before the courts. 

None of the above allegations have been proven in court.

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