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Edmonton cop suspended over T-shirt
Date: Tuesday, November 14 2006
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November 14, 2006

Edmonton cop suspended over T-shirt

80-hour unpaid suspension for 'no rats' clothing delivered to fellow officers

By ELIZA BARLOW, EDMONTON SUN

A veteran city cop was slapped with an 80-hour unpaid suspension and ordered to read a book on the police code of silence for designing "no rats" T-shirts and distributing them to fellow cops.

Det. Dave Pelech, who earlier pleaded guilty to one count of discreditable conduct in the June 2005 fiasco, was sentenced yesterday by Calgary Police Service Insp. Al Redford.

The penalty amused Mike Quinn, an ex-Minneapolis cop and author of Walking With the Devil: The Police Code of Silence, the book Pelech was directed to read within 90 days.

"It's flattering. I'm honoured that they think my book would make a difference in this guy," said Quinn when contacted by the Sun in Minneapolis yesterday.

Quinn called the 80-hour suspension without pay a "stiff" sentence. He said he would like to talk to Pelech once he's read the book to see what he thought of it.

The 181-page book details an unwritten code of silence in police departments that dictates "cops cover for cops."

On June 4 and 5, 2005, the hearing was told, Pelech and other members of Downtown Division's Squad C2 took part in an Edmonton Police Association slo-pitch tournament.

Pelech designed and ordered T-shirts for the Squad C2 team and gave them to squad members, who along with Pelech wore them at various times during the tournament.

The T-shirts bore a red circle with the number "440" inside with a red diagonal line through it. The number 440 is police code for a rat or a mouse tattoo.

In his decision, Redford noted Pelech, whose 25-year service record was previously flawless, only made up the T-shirts after a "cascading series of misfortunes" befell Squad C2, which he supervised from March 2002 to April 2005.

http://cnews.canoe.ca/CNEWS/Canada/2006/11/14/pf-2352021.html

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