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Cop who arrested McArthur in 2016 accused of breaching police policy: lawyer

TORONTO — A Toronto police officer involved in a 2016 arrest of serial killer Bruce McArthur is accused of breaching the force’s policy on how to handle reports of domestic violence.

Sgt. Paul Gauthier’s lawyer says the disciplinary charges against his client relate to allegations that while he obtained a statement from a man complaining about McArthur, he did not record it on video as the policy requires.

Lawrence Gridin says it’s also alleged Gauthier failed to take photos of the man’s injuries within 72 hours, which is another requirement. He says the injuries were documented, however.

Gauthier is charged with insubordination and neglect of duty, but the allegations against him had not previously been released because the officer was not present for what was meant to be his first appearance before the police tribunal on Tuesday.

Gridin has said he is confident the evidence will show his client helped identify McArthur as a serial killer and did not hamper the investigation into his crimes.

The lawyer has also argued the case should be heard by a judge rather than a high-ranking officer appointed by Chief Mark Saunders. But the prosecution and the superintendent who oversaw Tuesday’s hearing said it was too early in the process to make submissions on that issue.

McArthur pleaded guilty last week to eight counts of first-degree murder in the deaths of men with ties to Toronto’s gay village.

He was arrested in January 2018 and shortly afterwards, the force’s professional standards unit launched an internal investigation related to the case.

The review was sparked when the detective leading the probe said he came across some “concerning” information while reviewing two previous investigations into five missing men from the gay village.

McArthur had been interviewed by police a few years ago in a separate, unrelated incident.

The Canadian Press