A Belleville police officer was given seven days to resign from the force Friday.
In October 2015, Eric Shorey pleaded guilty to two counts of discreditable conduct. The charges stem from a 2013 trial where Shorey was found guilty by Justice Peter Tetley of criminal harassment and breach of trust after the 10 year officer used Belleville police service time and equipment to stalk his estranged girlfriend in Prince Edward County.
During his sentencing Friday, Police Services Act hearing officer, Deputy Chief Terrence Kelly (Ret’d) recapped submissions presented in the 2013 trial. Evidence found Shorey had made 25 inquires on 15 different occasions using the Canadian Police Information Centre (CPIC) and Ministry of Transportation databases to run background checks on the victim and her new boyfriend. Shorey was also caught on camera sitting in his truck outside the victim’s home on two separate occasions. Shorey had sent texts to the victim telling her, “she had better watch herself in the City of Belleville.”
“She was made to fear for her and her children’s safety with the involvement of Shorey in her life,” said Kelly.
During the two day hearing in October, Shorey’s lawyer Joanne Mulcahy argued every attempt should be made to see if rehabilitation is possible given his police performance and the fact he has no previous record. Mulcahy went on to explain that no violence or threatening behaviour was exhibited by Shorey and that his guilty plea shows he accepts his guilt. Character letters from friends, family, the public and fellow officers were also presented in Shorey’s defence.
Belleville Police Services Act lawyers David Migicovsky and Jessica Barrow however argued for dismissal.
Kelly said he accepts Shorey’s feeling of remorse but he’s not convinced he accepts the seriousness of his actions.
“His behaviour poses a risk to re-offend,” he said.
In making his decision Kelly said he put a high importance on deterrence stating Shorey’s actions are in a direct conflict of the principals of the Belleville Police Service, the Police Services Act and the Oath of Office.