A Niagara Regional Police officer who pleaded guilty in the United States in a cross-border steroid smuggling case is now allowed to remain on the force and collect his pay, pending a sentencing hearing next year.
At a police disciplinary hearing Tuesday in St. Catharines, Ont., Const. Geoff Purdie appeared briefly but declined to enter a plea to internal police discipline charges of discreditable conduct and insubordination that ultimately could cost him his job.
Purdie pleaded guilty on Oct. 31 in a Buffalo court to the smuggling of thousands of dollars worth of anabolic steroids. He admitted to repeatedly driving across the Canada-U.S. border during the fall of 2011, picking up multiple packages of steroids, and then flashing his badge as he drove back into Canada past Customs officials. He has been suspended, collecting pay since his initial arrest in Buffalo in April.
A second officer, Scott Heron, failed to appear at Tuesday's disciplinary proceeding, for what his legal counsel would only say was "a personal reason."
Heron faces internal discipline after he, Casey Langelaan, a recently retired officer, and civilian Bernie Pollino, all from the border community of Fort Erie, Ont., were charged criminally with running a cross-border cheese-smuggling ring that police alleged moved hundreds of thousands of dollars in cheap U.S mozzarella into Canada and resold it to pizzerias across the Niagara region.
The guy in the green hat who tries to intervene is Dr. Bruce Henry. He was Chief of Staff at DMH when all this was going down, and is my wife and my son's doctor. He's a wonderful man who is loved in this town and the way things went down with that whole situation was nothing but a bunch of bullshit that never needed to happen. No one was actually charged with anything despite the arrests - no surprise there.
You're absolutely right. Off to US Federal Pound-me-in-the-Ass Prison with him, and good riddance.