Surrey RCMP is continuing its investigation into an alleged altercation involving the wife of Delta Police Chief Neil Dubord that has set off a firestorm in the community.
The alleged assault occurred on June 6 near the Dubord’s property on Centennial Beach in Boundary Bay.
It came to the attention of the Delta Optimist, after a video was posted the afternoon of June 24 in a private Facebook group. The video shows a verbal exchange between Lorraine Dubord and two of the victim’s friends after the alleged altercation took place on June 6.
Kiran Sidhu, a teacher in the Richmond school district, said she left a picnic before it was over. Unfamiliar with the beach area, and with the tide coming in, Sidhu said she was forced to climb onto rocks, which according to the City of Delta, are on public property, to get to where her car was parked, which was well away from their picnic spot. The rocks are situated along the residential property line of the Dubord’s home.
As Sidhu walked across the rocks, Dubord allegedly yelled at her to get down, to go home and that she didn’t belong there, but with the tide coming in, Sidhu said she was unable to do so.
“There was no way to get through with the tide coming in. I started crawling, climbing the rocks and then this woman comes out from the home above me, who I now know is Lorraine Dubord, and she tells me to get down. I told her I was just trying to get back to my car and that there was no other way to get through.”
Sidhu said Dubord told her she should have been better prepared and “if I was as fat as you, I wouldn’t be at the beach.”
“I kept going, and I called her a ‘Karen’ and asked whether she was going to call the police. She started it and I’m not one to be a victim of abuse from anyone,” Sidhu said. “I almost slipped at one point, and she said it would be so funny if you fell. I swore at her again and she said she would spray me with her hose, which I told her would be assault if she did.”
Sidhu said Dubord then returned a minute or so later allegedly spraying her with a garden hose.
“My face was wet, my hair was wet…it was just so shocking,” she said. “She is an adult woman, I’m an adult woman. I was made to feel so unwelcome in these white spaces, which is something I’m aware of being a racialized woman in these white spaces as a teacher, as an active member of my union and I work on changing that.”
Sidhu said the next day, June 7, she reported the incident to Delta police.
She told the Optimist that she was not interviewed in person and was asked by the department to email her an official statement.
She said she was then contacted by phone by DPD on Wednesday, June 10 and told that the investigation was closed.
“I felt like this happened very quickly…do all cases get solved this quickly,” she said. I really felt like something was missing. In that moment, I thought, ‘wait, they didn’t even meet with me. That feels wrong.’”
She said as she continued to think about the case, and sharing details with her friends, she wondered what to do next.
On June 15, Sidhu said she filed a complaint with DPD and on June 16, received an email from DPD introducing her to an investigating officer from Surrey RCMP.
Since then, Lorraine Dubord issued an apology in a statement exclusively to the Optimist.
“I would like to apologize to the individual involved in the way the situation was handled at Centennial Beach three weeks ago. Everyone should feel welcomed and supported in our community,” stated Dubord. “I trust that all the facts and the complete story surrounding this regrettable incident will be gathered in due course through the ongoing and independent RCMP investigation.
Sidhu said she was disappointed in Dubord’s statement, saying she could have at least referred to Sidhu by name.
Sunday afternoon, about 25 residents went to Centennial Beach with signs with anti-racism messages. Many residents on social media have also called for Chief Dubord’s dismissal.
The Office of the Police Complaint Commissioner (OPCC) say they are also reviewing the circumstances involved.