Const. Jenn Berkley on Monday, her first day with the Oak Bay Police. (Travis Paterson/News Staff)

Const. Jenn Berkley on Monday, her first day with the Oak Bay Police. (Travis Paterson/News Staff)

Oak Bay Police welcome former Langford firefighter as newest officer

New position marks return to the Island for Const. Jenn Berkley

Her swearing in with the Oak Bay Police on Monday marked a return to Vancouver Island for Const. Jenn Berkley.

The newest member of the 23-officer squad will start with general duties.

Originally from Nanaimo, Berkley spent the last year with the RCMP. The first half was with the academy training in Regina, the last half a placement in Mission.

READ MORE: Oak Bay cops tackle tough subjects with Twitter humour

When the opportunity to join Oak Bay came up, the long-time Langford volunteer firefighter took a chance.

“The goal was to get back to the Island, to work in a smaller detachment and to focus on pro-active policing and community involvement,” Berkley said.

As one of the RCMP’s smaller Lower Mainland detachments, Mission had “everything going on,” she added, knowing it is a quieter, slower pace in Oak Bay.

During more than five years as a Langford firefighter Berkley worked with seniors in recreation and activities, and in health care.

She’s also familiar with Oak Bay as her grandparents lived here.

“It’s a positive move for myself, to be closer to my family,” Berkley said. “And I do appreciate the ability to be proactive as opposed to working call-to-call.”

That five years of firefighting gives Berkley a lot of practical experience as a first responder, giving her a total package that the Oak Bay Police Department liked, said Chief Andy Brinton.

“When we go through our hiring process we look for fit,” Brinton said.

“It’s about how they’ll fit within our organization. This member has experience outside of policing in working with youth and significant experience with seniors, and senior care, so we feel that will make her a really good fit with Oak Bay community style.”

Brinton calls the Oak Bay style of policing a “full-circle” compared to the calls that officers respond to in cities with higher volumes of calls.

“[There] officers attend and move on, [but] here, we tend to problem solve and find a solution, and we’re pretty fortunate here with the hires we’ve had this far,” Brinton said.

Berkley is the first of four new officers Brinton expects to have in place by the end of February.

he said. They’ll replace a number of retirees.

“We’re still actively seeking people who are interested as we generally hire experienced officers,” Brinton said. “We like that they are a known commodity so we can assess how they’ll fit into our department.”

reporter@oakbaynews.com

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Habitat Acquisition Trust has received provincial funding to help restore Garry oak ecosystems on southern Vancouver Island. (Photo by Jeremy da Silva)
Central Saanich park among sites for local Garry oak restoration projects

Habitat Acquisition Trust received $140,000 in funding for 12 projects

A family of ducks that lives near Saanich Municipal Hall recently welcomed 11 ducklings and took them for a swim in the koi pond outside the offices. (District of Saanich/Twitter)
Pair of ducks make Saanich Municipal Hall a nursery for 11 hatchlings

Family of ducks spent time in koi pond before heading down to Swan Lake

Architect’s rendering of the 7 Erskine Lane development, showing the view from the east and south. (VDA Architecture Ltd. image)
View Royal green-lights residential development on Erskine Lane

First of two developments near Victoria General Hospital will provide 71 housing units

Sue Hodgson returns as publisher of the Peninsula News Review starting June 1. (Courtesy Sue Hodgson)
Peninsula News Review welcomes back Sue Hodgson as publisher

Dale Naftel takes helm of Oak Bay News as publisher

Andrew Swanson was arrested Wednesday after he was wanted for an alleged choking assault and for obstructing police. (Black Press Media File Photo)
Victoria police arrest Andrew Swanson on warrants for alleged choking assault, obstruction

A member of the public spotted Swanson and called 911 before police came and made the arrest

Protesters attempt to stop clear-cutting of old-growth trees in Fairy Creek near Port Renfrew. (Will O’Connell photo)
VIDEO: Workers, activists clash at site of Vancouver Island logging operation

Forest license holders asking for independent investigation into incident

Anyone with information on any of these individuals is asked to call 1-800-222-TIPS (8477) or visit the website victoriacrimestoppers.ca for more information.
Greater Victoria Crime Stoppers wanted list for the week of May 4

Greater Victoria Crime Stoppers is seeking the public’s help in locating the… Continue reading

(Black Press Media file photo)
POLL: Do you plan to travel on the Victoria Day long weekend?

It’s the unofficial start to the summer season. A time of barbecues,… Continue reading

Starting Tuesday, May 11, B.C. adults born in 1981 and earlier will be able to register for a vaccine dose. (Haley Ritchie/Black Press Media)
BC adults 40+ eligible to book COVID-19 vaccinations next week

Starting Tuesday, people born in 1981 and earlier will be able to schedule their inoculation against the virus

Parks Canada and Tla-o-qui-aht Tribal Parks dig the washed up Princess M out from sand along the south shore of the Pacific Rim National Park Reserve. (Nora O’Malley photo)
Rescue attempt costs man his boat off Pacific Rim National Park Reserve

Coast Guard response questioned after volunteer responder’s speedboat capsizes in heavy swells

Road sign on Highway 1 west of Hope warns drivers of COVID-19 essential travel road checks on the highways into the B.C. Interior. (Jessica Peters/Chilliwack Progress)
B.C. residents want travel checks at Alberta border, MLA says

Police road checks in place at highways out of Vancouver area

People line up for COVID-19 vaccination at a drop-in clinic at Cloverdale Recreation Centre on Wednesday, April 27, 2021. Public health officials have focused efforts on the Fraser Health region. (Aaron Hinks/Peace Arch News)
B.C. reports 1st vaccine-induced blood clot; 684 new COVID cases Thursday

Two million vaccine doses reached, hospital cases down

More than 6,000 camping reservations in British Columbia were cancelled as a result of a provincial order limiting travel between health regions. (Unsplash)
1 in 4 camping reservations cancelled in B.C. amid COVID-19 travel restrictions

More than 6,500 BC Parks campsite reservations for between April 19 and May 25 have been revoked

Most Read