This is the letter I intend to send regarding our post Boston Pizza.
Please post your comments. I still have some fine tuning to do to the letter. This is the first draft.
The intention is to have a page attached with signatures for those that agree with it.
Chief Superintendent Jamie H. Graham
Surrey RCMP Detachment
14355 57th Ave., Surrey, BC
His Worship, Mayor Doug McCallum
City of Surrey
14245 56th Ave., Surrey, BC
02 May 2002
Dear Chief Superintendent Graham,
I am writing this letter to voice my concern over a situation I was involved in on 01 May 2002 at approximately 10:30pm.
I was part of a group of motor cyclists whose destination was the Boston Pizza in south Surrey. Upon leaving dinner as a group we were pulled over and directed into the Petro Canada station at 152nd St and King George Highway by the Surrey RCMP. We were stopped by patrol unit '5B44', I believe the officer was the shift supervisor, his name tag, however, was absent.
Upon dismount of our motorcycles we were informed to remove our helmets and gather around the front of his patrol car. The officer then proceeded to flaunt his authority. The officer was disrespectful, condescending, and rude. The officer informed us that he could, and would have our licenses suspend for 6 months within 5 minutes if he caught us breaking the law.
We are a group of responsible motor cyclists. We always ride with the utmost respect for other vehicles and abide by the rules of the road. I do not appreciate the treatment we received, we are not hooligans, we are, for the most part, professionals in various industries and expect to be treated with respect by the local law enforcement.
The officer explained that we were "bobbing and weaving" through traffic. Unfortunately, it is my opinion that the officer has little to no knowledge of motor cyclist safety. We preformed one maneuver which is taught by all riding schools and becomes common sense to any motor cyclist familiar with riding on the streets. We were in the left hand lane, heading north of 152nd St. in a staggered formation. Upon entering the intersection at 152nd St. and 24th Ave. all riders in the left hand position crossed to the right hand position within the lane as there was a car turning left. At no time did our group fail to signal a lane change, perform a dangerous act or act irresponsibly. Other than performing this maneuver, we were riding in a staggered formation at the posted speed limit for 3 blocks.
I do understand that there is a problem in the lower mainland with deaths related to motor vehicles, I understand the local law enforcement has a job to do. I do, however, expect that police officers treat citizens with respect, especially when they have not committed any crime. If the officer had stopped us and was respectful and courteous I would not be writing this letter.
The city of Surrey has been trying to promote tourism and increase the number of visitors. If the local RCMP are going to act rude, disrespectful and flaunt their authority on a whim, I would estimate that people will not return to Surrey. This incident has me wondering whether I will consider Surrey as a destination again. Surrey businesses will only lose out if people stop coming to the city for fear of harassment from the local RCMP.
If this was a one time incident then I would suggest the officer be informed of motor cycle safe riding techniques. I would also suggest, due to the fact that the officer was the supervisor, that he be informed that his display of authority does not follow departmental guidelines.
If this incident was a display of Surrey RCMP's attitude towards motor cyclists then I would expect the city of Surrey will lose some valuable visitors.
Attached you will find signatures from members of the group who are also concerned about the incident and support this letter.
I respectfully request a reply to confirm this letter and attachment have reached the intended recipients.