Lethbridge Police Service: Statement by Chief of Police Scott Woods issued in response to recent news coverage of disgruntled officers

Lethbridge, Alberta – I am aware of recent media coverage by a local news outlet, based on an anonymous source, which has alleged a high degree of dysfunction within the Lethbridge Police Service. Although, to date, such coverage has been confined to a small market share, the manner and tone of this coverage casts aspersions not just on me, serving as Chief of Police, but on the vast majority of the people who serve the City of Lethbridge as a part of the Police Service.

Accordingly, I have decided that it is important to not let those aspersions go unanswered. The honour and integrity of the Service and all the individuals who work here demand nothing less.

Lethbridge Police Service
Lethbridge Police Service

On a certain level, there is brokenness within the Service. However, much of that dysfunction is derived from a small minority working within the organization who are more concerned with protecting their own interests and influence than maintaining the ideals of serving the public. When this small group of individuals is held to account for their own misconduct, or perhaps denied a workplace request, they often lash out and accuse others of being bullies.

I, and a continuous line of Chiefs serving before me, have tried to address this toxicity, and bring reforms to the corporate culture. We have met with varying degrees of success. It certainly does not help when anti-reform elements can run to friends in the media, often with anonymity, to uncritically air what amounts to their personal grievances.

I knew that this would be one of my great challenges when the Police Commission asked me to serve as Chief of Police on an interim basis. It will continue to be a constant challenge for as long as I have the privilege of serving.

However, for whatever time I have left as Chief of Police, and no matter who the next Chief of Police may be, I will continue to work to maintain the Lethbridge Police Service as an honourable place to serve our City.

There will be no media availability in relation to this matter and no further comment.

Lethbridge Police Service

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