After three years with the RCMP new officer Const. Jake Colwell has adjusted to the proactive approach of the Oak Bay Police Department.
It was only a decade ago the former Belmont secondary student was training on Goudy Field with the Bulldogs football team preparing to play the Mount Douglas Rams.
Colwell went to Camosun College and was a Victoria police reserve member for four years until 2018 when the RCMP hired him. He finished the RCMP’s storied Depot Division training in September of 2018. He was posted to North Vancouver where he served on general duty, responding to a high volume of calls.
“What attracted me here was the community policing model that you hear about,” Colwell said. “The ability to build and keep relationships.”
When you’re responding to calls in a bigger city, most of them are because something has gone wrong, he added.
Colwell also worked as a Protective Services Officer at the Royal Jubilee Hospital.
“The big thing for me is the chance to take on a lot of roles,” Colwell said. “There’s officers working in schools, working with the elderly, just working with everyone.”
Oak Bay Police Chief Ray Bernoties credits Colwell’s time in North Van.
“He honed his exceptional conflict resolution techniques, adaptability, and communication skills,” Bernoties said. “Jake’s dynamic energy, compassion, and proactive policing style make him a perfect fit for Oak Bay Police. We are as delighted to have him on our team as he and his family are to be back home.”
Colwell was drawn to policing for the balance of problem-solving, being active on your feet, and still spending time at the desk.
“So far it’s been a change of pace,” Colwell said. “We’ve already had some busier days relative to what Oak Bay police usually experience, I’m told.”
Colwell is one of six new hires since Const. Jenn Berkley was sworn-in in early December with Consts. Kirstin Stuart, Deane Johnston, Derek Brand and Jeff Savoy. Oak Bay Police has 23 officers in total with four more on secondment to externally funded positions.