Complaint to Information Commissioner – High River General Warrant

Airdrie, Alberta
March 5, 2014 MY FILE: 053
Ms. Suzanne Legault The Information Commissioner of Canada Place de Ville, Tower B 112 Kent Street, 7th Floor Ottawa, Ontario K1A 1H3
Dear Ms. Legault:
Re: FOLLOW-UP COMPLAINT – RCMP ATI FILE: A-2013-05910

Reference is being made to my previous letter of complaint dated December 2, 2013. Please find attached a copy of the RCMP’s second no records response dated February 24, 2014 that I received today, March 5, 2014.
The RCMP’s response states: “Based on the information provided, a search for records was conducted in K Division, High River Detachment and HQ Ottawa. Please be advised we were unable to locate any information relating to your request.”
I specifically requested the search be conducted in: “OTTAWA HQ, K DIVISION, SOUTHERN ALBERTA DISTRICT & HIGH RIVER DETACHMENT.” Please note that in this most recent no records response letter they failed to search for records in the RCMP’s “SOUTHERN ALBERTA DISTRICT” – the most likely place were these court records would have been prepared and filed in an Alberta court.
It also appears from the first paragraph of this letter they may have narrowed their search for “all information regarding a general warrant for all High River dwelling houses…” I have attached a copy of the full text of my ATI Act request and it specified a search for very specific information about “legal applications and completed forms including drafts and final versions made with respect to a general warrant.”
It is impossible to believe that not one of the 273 RCMP officers working in High River during the flood never asked any of their superiors if the needed a warrant to kick in nearly 2,000 doors to High River homes, and further that not one of these queries was documented. We are also aware of rumours that any RCMP office who did question the kicking in of doors was placed on other duties. Please send the RCMP back for a complete and thorough search for these records. The victims of these break-ins of High River deserve nothing less.

The third paragraph of the RCMP response is weird because in all of the 700 ATI Act requests I have filed with federal government departments over the years, I have never seen this used. Please check to see if these records might have been destroyed “…in accordance with the schedule established by the Librarian and Archivist of Canada.”
Finally, the fourth paragraph is also confusing and unprecedented in my dealings with RCMP responses to dozens of ATI Act requests. It is possible that another police force did apply for a general warrant for the High River residences, the Alberta Sheriff’s or the Alberta Justice and Solicitor General’s department for example. If this is the case, it is impossible that there are no records of this action in the RCMP files with regard to police searches of High River homes during the flood.
Yours sincerely,
Dennis R. Young
1330 Ravenswood Drive SE
AIRDRIE AB T4A 0P8
Home Phone: 587-360-1111
New E-Mail: Contact Us
cc Right Honourable Stephen Harper, Prime Minister of Canada
The Honourable Steven Blaney, Minister of Public Safety
The Honourable Peter Mackay, Minister of Justice