Christopher Nicholson

Christopher Nicholson

Jury selection set for Abbotsford cop facing 10 charges

Christopher Nicholson accused of obstruction and breach of trust

Jury selection is scheduled to begin Sept. 7 in B.C. Supreme Court in Vancouver for an Abbotsford Police officer accused of, among other things, leaking information to a drug dealer so that person could avoid arrest.

Christopher Nicholson was originally scheduled to go to trial in May 2016, but numerous pre-trial applications have delayed the proceedings.

It’s not yet known whether his trial will begin immediately at the conclusion of the jury selection or whether a new date will be set for that.

Nicholson, who first began working with the Abbotsford Police Department (APD) in 2005, was charged in May 2013 with six counts of obstructing justice, three counts of breach of trust and one count of conspiracy to traffic a controlled substance.

He remains on suspension without pay from his job as the case proceeds through the courts.

In addition to allegedly leaking information, Nicholson is accused of providing false information to other officers, who used the details to obtain search warrants for drugs in private residences.

He is also alleged to have conspired with an informant to have drugs delivered to a residence and have other police officers execute a search warrant soon after.

In February 2015, the Office of the Police Complaint Commissioner (OPCC) announced it was looking into 148 allegations of misconduct against Nicholson and 16 other APD officers.

The OPCC said the matter stemmed from the investigation into Nicholson, and the allegations included corrupt practice, deceit and neglect of duty.

The investigation was later narrowed down to 15 officers and 137 allegations.

Then, in February of this year, the OPCC announced that it was discontinuing its investigation into all but four of the officers, and it was continuing to look into only 15 of the claims.

The agency has said it will release a report on the findings once the investigation is complete.

The OPCC does not lay criminal charges, but looks for infractions under the Police Act. Officers deemed to have committed wrongdoing face disciplinary measures ranging from a written reprimand to a suspension or firing.