A charge of discreditable conduct against a Guelph Police officer apparently stems from contact between the officer and the sister of the man who murdered the officer's relative in
Const. Neil Moulton, a 16-year-veteran of the Guelph Police Service, appeared at a hearing Thursday at the Clair Road Emergency Services Centre to face a Police Services Act charge of one count of discreditable conduct.
Bernard Cummins, the Guelph Police Association lawyer representing Moulton, said that the case is about the officer's right to be able to "mourn in peace."
Normore was a relative of Moulton, Cummins said.
There was apparently contact between Moulton and Byrne's sister last April, leading to the allegation of discreditable conduct.
Details of what that contact was have not yet been disclosed.
"It's quite obvious that after the complainant's brother murdered one of my client's family members and then maimed an innocent civilian in an effort to kill himself and my client wanted to be left alone so that their family could properly mourn and come to grips with a horrific tragedy," Cummins said.
"We're here to defend it and say my client deserves to mourn in peace and let his family recover from a horrific tragedy that no human being should ever endure and that's what we're going to defend.
"My client and his family just wanted to recover in peace as any person would expect," Cummins said. "So we will have a hearing on whether his response was appropriate and I'm convinced that it was."
The person making the allegation against Moulton was not in attendance at Thursday's hearing.
Inspector Dave Pringle of the Guelph Police said that Moulton remains on active duty.
"A complainant brought a complaint forward and it was investigated by the Professional Services Branch of the Guelph Police Service and as a result there is one charge against Const. Neil Moulton," Pringle.
Moulton remains on active duty while the matter is ongoing, Pringle said.
"Today was basically just identifying who the parties were," the inspector said.
Thursday's hearing was brief, setting a date for the next public hearing which will be on March 16.