Kelowna Mountie at centre of UBCO wellness check lawsuit faces new accusations

‘Const. Browning and the RCMP have engaged in conduct that is reprehensible and deserves punishment’

A second woman has filed a civil lawsuit against Kelowna Mountie Lacey Browning, accusing the constable of assaulting her while on duty.

The suit filed in BC Supreme Court by Fiona Read on Wednesday, July 15, comes less than a month after security camera footage was released showing Const. Browning dragging UBC Okanagan student Mona Wang down a hallway at her residence and stepping on her head. Wang is suing the RCMP officer, the Attorney General of Canada, the Minister of Public Safety and Solicitor following the incident.

Read’s allegations date back to the early morning hours of New Year’s Day 2016, following a party at her friend’s neighbour’s house.

Read was initially meant to spend the night at her friend’s house but she says she became uncomfortable at the party and began walking back to her friend’s house to gather her things. She had planned to head back to her own house. She claims her friends attempted to stop her from leaving but was eventually allowed to leave.

Leaving her car at her friend’s house, Read began walking home. She came upon an RCMP vehicle and, according to the suit, felt she was “in need of protection” and approached the cruiser to seek help from the officer, who was later identified to be Const. Browning.

Browning asked Read to confirm her first name was Fiona, the suit claims, and upon doing so, “Browning grabbed the plaintiff, flipped her around, grabbed her by her hair and pounded her head into the ground multiple times causing damage to the plaintiff’s face.”

“The plaintiff lost count of how many times her face was slammed into concrete,” reads the suit.

Read claims Browning then cuffed her and pulled her from the ground by her arms which were behind her back. Read was arrested and brought to the RCMP detachment, where she claims she was held for six hours and Browning never asked her a question besides her name.

READ MORE: UBCO student sues Kelowna RCMP officer for alleged assault during wellness check

READ MORE: Protest in support student Mona Wang draws small crowd in Kelowna

Read was fingerprinted and eventually told she was being charged with assault and resisting arrest, though she was never read her rights and the Crown never approved the charges, the claim states.

“Browning charged the plaintiff in order to cover up her assault on the plaintiff,” the suit reads.

Despite arriving at the detachment in “extreme pain and discomfort,” Read claims she was not allowed to be treated by paramedics.

After her discharge, Read went to see a doctor, where her injuries were documented, including her bruised and swollen face, missing chunks of hair and injured right knee.

“As a result of the brutal assault by Browning, the plaintiff had to permanently quit running and skiing due to the severity of the injury to her knee,” the suit states.

“The actions of Browning and the RCMP were reckless, arrogant, high-handed, abusive, and showed a callous disregard to the plaintiff’s rights. Browning and the RCMP have engaged in conduct that is reprehensible and deserves punishment.”

The following day, Read claims she attempted to file a complaint against Browning to her supervisor but they refused to accept it.

“The actions of the supervisor are evidence of the RCMP being complicit in covering up Browning’s assault of the plaintiff,” reads the suit.

The plaintiff only became aware that she had a right to complain and take legal action against Browning’s actions following media reports about recent allegations against Browning and the RCMP’s statements that ‘they take complaints seriously.’”

None of Read’s claims have been proven in court and Browning has not filed a response.

The RCMP has not yet been formally served with the lawsuit but the claims will be reviewed and addressed by the Department of Justice through the normal civil processes, said Staff-Sgt. Janelle Shoihet.

“The allegations are also being reviewed to determine if there are any other actions that need to be taken,” she added.

Browning was placed on administrative leave after criminal and internal investigations were launched related to her actions against Wang.

Shoihet said the criminal investigation into the previous allegations has been completed and is now subject to an external review by the Abbotsford Police Department. Once they have completed their review, and if there are no other investigative requirements, the materials will then be sent to the BC Prosecution Service for charge assessment.

An online petition calling for Browning to be fired and criminally charged has reached nearly 375,000 signatures.

Do you have something to add to this story, or something else we should report on? Email: michael.rodriguez@kelownacapnews.com


@michaelrdrguez
Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

lawsuitRCMP

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

‘GoFundMe’ page created for Vanderhoof women who were in a brutal accident last month

Sasha Mortensen and Jessica Raymond were hit by a pick-up truck July 29, while in an embrace on Keith Road next to Plateau Mill.

Vanderhoof sees a surge of scam callers

Residents have received multiple unknown phone calls from a person claiming to be a representative of the CRA or law enforcement, local mounties said.

Brucejack mine fatality identified

Patrick Critch was from Newfoundland

Pretivm Resources reports fatality at Brucejack mine

The isolated incident occurred last Friday, and the employee passed away on Sunday in hospital

QUIZ: How much do you know about British Columbia?

On this B.C. Day long weekend, put your knowledge of our province to the test

B.C. would not send students back to school if there was ‘overwhelming risk’: Horgan

Plan has left many parents across the province worried about their children’s safety

Face masks will be mandatory for customers at all Walmart locations

Requirement goes into effect on Wednesday, Aug. 12 across Canada

Masks to be mandatory on BC Transit, TransLink starting Aug. 24

Both BC Transit and TransLink made the announcement in separate press releases on Thursday

Penticton homes evacuated due to wildfire northwest of city

Emergency vehicles are at the scene near Sage Mesa, evacuation centre set up in Penticton

British Columbians worried as end of COVID-19 rental supplement looms

Single mom struggles as supplement was her saving grace

Arson suspected in several wildfires lit near Kootenay town

RCMP making progress in arson investigation of Marsh Creek fires

Three screening officers at Vancouver airport test positive for COVID-19

The public is not believed to be at risk of exposure

VIDEO: B.C. conservation officers free not-so-wily coyote with head stuck in jar

Poor pup was found with a glass jar stuck on its head in Maple Ridge

‘Do our lives count for less?’: COVID-19 exposes cracks in disability aid

In July, Parliament approved a $600 payment for people with disabilities facing additional expenses during COVID-19

Most Read