Requirement for police to identify themselves when asked?

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jsherk
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Requirement for police to identify themselves when asked?

Unread post by jsherk on

What requirements are there (acts/statutes/regulations) for police to identify themselves?

I would imagine there is something that deals with their uniform and badge. Anybody know where this is?

And are they required to identify themselves in anyway when asked? If we get pulled over at night, can I ask them to identify themselves before I answer any questions or provide my ID?

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bobajob
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Unread post by bobajob on

assuming the marked car, flashing lights, siren, uniform and badge isn't enough?
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jsherk
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Unread post by jsherk on

My question is what SPECIFIC laws/acts/statutes/regulations govern their identification (like badge) and is there a requirement to identify themselves if I ask them something like "what is your name and badge number". For example, if it's night, maybe I cannot see the badge number very well, so if I ask them do they have to tell me?

There are some people out there that say police need to show you 3 types of identification when you ask. If that is true (which I doubt it is) I would like to see where the requirement is.
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Decatur
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Unread post by Decatur on

I don't know of any Act or Regulation that would require a Peace Officer to identify themselves. However, there is a possibility that an individual agency may have requirement in their own General Orders with regard to wearing either a visible badge number or name tag and/or identifying themselves when requested.
The officers name and number would also appear on any PON that was issued at the roadside.


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Unread post by argyll on

If you had a serious doubt about an officer being who they said they were you could always call dispatch and check. But not for every stop, please !
Former Ontario Police Officer. Advice will become less relevant as the time goes by !


jsherk
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Unread post by jsherk on

There must be a law somewhere dealing with this to some degree or another.

I did find this with regards to OPP specifically

ONTARIO PROVINCIAL POLICE ORDERS
6.11.7: IDENTIFICATION BADGE/WARRANT CARD
Carrying
- A uniform member shall, while in the lawful performance of duty, carry the identification badge/warrant card at all times, whether in uniform or civilian clothes.
- A uniform member shall produce the identification badge/warrant card when required to establish his/her identity in the lawful performance of duty, but shall not use them to obtain a favour/private advantage.
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Decatur
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Unread post by Decatur on

Like I said, It's usually in local policy and procedures, not in law. Violation of the policy or procedure can result in a charge under the Police Services Act.


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Unread post by OPS Copper on

Unless they are out of uniform there is no requirement. Seems that this is some internet myth that police have to identify themselves with three pieces of ID or that they have to present a business card when asked. Usually it is something that Sovereign citizens have concocted.

There is no such a requirement. In fact I do not even carry business cards.

when In uniform you do not have to talk. But I will make the demand for documents if you are driving. It is a demand and not a request. I will make it again. if they are not presented or they make any motion to be looking for them I will explain the requirements as laid out under the HTA and that I will place them under arrest for failing to identify.

I will make the demand one more time.

I will then arrest you. remember reasonable force can be used to effect the arrest. Should you resist then resist arrest criminal charges will then also be laid. I will then Obtain your ID and release you with the appropriate charges.

I have run across a this before and I will not play their game.

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jsherk
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Unread post by jsherk on

I assumed it was a myth (3 pieces of ID, business card) and just wanted to confirm that was the case.

So there is nothing that requires an officer to wear their badge in a visible location besides local police force policy?

But I don't think it is unreasonable to ask for an officers name and badge number, especially if the badge is not easily visible (night time, wearing a rain/winter jacket).

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Unread post by ynotp on

I don't see how a policy (real or not) requiring an officer identifying themselves has anything to do with charges related to the HTA.


jsherk
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Unread post by jsherk on

Whether the officer lays a charge or not was not why I was asking.

If an officer were to violate my charter rights at say a RIDE checkpoint but did lay a charge, then I would not know who they were.
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Unread post by argyll on

Their name would be on the paper that you were served.
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highwaystar
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Unread post by highwaystar on

While your question is easy, the answer is actually quite complex. Statutorily, there is no legislation that requires an officer to disclose their full identity to you. However, as others have consistently stated already, most officers are bound by the polices/rules of their individual police services. If they contravene that, they can be brought up on charges under the Police Services Act.

What complicates the issue is where someone tries to make an Access to Information request. There is quite a bit of case law in this area but the 2 most cited decisions are Metropolitan Toronto Police Services Board (Re) (an appeal decision) and more importantly, the Division Court's decision in Duncanson v. Fineberg. I think most will agree that disclosing the names of officers can put them and their loved ones in peril, as well as significantly impede their ability to do undercover work.

However, if you read paragraph 254, you'll see that even the TPS agrees that there are times in specific cases where such disclosure is necessary.

So, that's the general police requirements.

However, from a practical perspective, if the accused can raise issue that he/she did not know the person was an officer, than it challenges virtually all the evidence of the Crown. After all, if any 'demand' is made by an officer, the accused must have a reasonable basis to know that such demand is truly coming from an 'agent of the Crown'. That is why the police policies are in place and why officers are issued badges/shields. This way, the Crown can argue that the defendant should have known the person was an agent of the Crown because he was wearing a uniform, was in a marked vehicle, was displaying their badge, etc. In other words, they will argue all those items to establish that a reasonable person WOULD have known the demand, detention and/or arrest were truly coming from an 'agent of the Crown'.

So, that's the complicated answer. In short, officers must abide by their police service's rules of identifying themselves. Practically speaking though, they WILL provide their name and badge number so that their testimony/evidence is better accepted in court and survive defense lawyer attacks.


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Unread post by Radar Identified on

highwaystar wrote:Practically speaking though, they WILL provide their name and badge number so that their testimony/evidence is better accepted in court and survive defense lawyer attacks.
This, above, is the key piece.

For jsherk, the question (that highwaystar mentions) is, would a reasonable person know that this is a police officer? Clearly, not everyone is reasonable, even though everyone thinks of themselves as being so.

"3 pieces of identification" is Sovereign Citizen horse s***.
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jsherk
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Unread post by jsherk on

argyll wrote:Their name would be on the paper that you were served.
CORRECTION: What I meant to say was "If an officer were to violate my charter rights at say a RIDE checkpoint but did NOT lay a charge, then I would not know who they were."

I am not disagreeing with anybody's comments here.

My question again would be:
Is it an unreasonable request to ask an officer for their name and badge number IF neither were easily visible? I would suggest that this is completely reasonable request.




+++ This is not legal advice, only my opinion +++


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