VPD officer urged hospital to admit Const. Nicole Chan the night before she died

This story contains harrowing details.

A Vancouver police officer is involved in the arrest of Const. Nicole Chan under the Mental Health Act the night before she committed suicide said he was trying to change the mind of a doctor at Vancouver General Hospital who released Chan.

Constant. Warren Head described how he was “advocating” for Chan’s hospitalization because he clearly felt that she was at risk of suicide. He said he’s also concerned that the police’s experience of conducting Chan’s mental health arrests has given her a better understanding of how to avoid being hospitalized.

“The doctor just mentioned to me that they spoke with Nicole, and based on the content of that conversation, they determined that she was not a threat to herself,” Head said. “They say the treatment plan she’s on is appropriate going forward.”

“I told them she was a police officer,” he said. “I believe she was knowledgeable enough to tell the doctors what they wanted to hear so she wouldn’t have to be hospitalized.”

Speaking on Day 4 of the BC Coroner’s Inquiry into Chan’s death, Head said he was surprised by the doctors’ decision to release Chan because, in his experience, fear Scary, that’s almost never the case.

“It was one of the first times I heard, ‘No, we won’t admit them,'” he said.

According to Head, he and Chan had met once, years earlier, while on a phone call.

Chan, 30, spent about two hours at the VGH outreach and assessment center before she was discharged at 11:35 p.m. on January 26, 2019 and taken home by a VPD member. She was found dead the next morning.

On Wednesday, the inquest heard excerpts from a WorkSafeBC claim that Chan filed months before she took her own life, detailing allegations of sexual assault by two VPD officers overseeing the incident. close.

Chan’s allegations of sexual assault and blackmail against Sgt. David Van Patten was investigated by New Westminster Police, however, the BC Public Prosecution Service ultimately decided not to approve the charges. Van Patten was eventually fired from the VPD.

Another superior that Chan had a cordial relationship with, Sgt. Greg McCullough, retired.

Boyfriend gives proof

On Wednesday, Jamie Gifford, Chan’s boyfriend and roommate told the coroner that Chan became increasingly depressed in the weeks before her death.

Gifford said: “She is very upset that nothing has been resolved in her case and she feels so hopeless that she has lost her career. “She’s very upset that all the people who put her in a situation where she lost her job are still able to work and can go on with their lives like nothing happened.”

Gifford said his relationship with Chan had become strained and when he told her on January 26, 2019 that he was going to a friend’s house for a while, she became distraught and intent on killing herself. death.

Gifford said a friend called the police, although Gifford himself didn’t think it was a good idea because of Chan’s relationship with the VPD.

He described a private conversation he had with Chan before she was taken to VGH by police.

“She told me she was worried that the person they were taking her to see was Dave Van Patten’s close friend in Human Resources,” said Gifford.

Gifford said he left their apartment at the urging of friends, taking potentially dangerous items with him. As he leaves, he meets Chan coming back and she assures him she’s fine, he said.

Gifford found Chan’s body when he returned to the apartment the next morning. A suicide note was presented at the coroner’s court as evidence.

If you or someone you know is struggling, here’s where to get help:

If you’re worried someone you know might be at risk of suicide, you should talk to them about it, says the Canadian Association for Suicide Prevention. Here are some warning signs:

  • Suicidal thoughts.
  • Stimulant abuse.
  • Purposeless.
  • Worry.
  • Feeling trapped.
  • Hopeless and helpless.
  • Withdrawal.
  • Angry.
  • reckless.
  • Mood change.


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