Top court won’t hear Mountie’s appeal over harassment allegations

Peter Merrifield alleged his superiors waged a seven-year campaign to damage his reputation

The Supreme Court of Canada says it will not hear an RCMP sergeant’s argument that he should be compensated for alleged harassment by superiors.

In 2017, the Ontario Superior Court found senior Mounties had behaved egregiously in a campaign of harassment against Peter Merrifield after they decided he lied about his run for political office.

The court awarded Merrifield $141,000 in damages and $825,000 in legal costs for his lawsuit, but the federal government and two RCMP managers successfully appealed the ruling.

Ontario’s Court of Appeal said in March that the judge overseeing Merrifield’s suit erred in recognizing a new, freestanding “tort of harassment,” which would establish harassment as a separate wrong or breach for which someone can be held civilly liable.

It said the judge also made mistakes in determining Merrifield’s superiors behaved in a way that constitutes intentional infliction of mental suffering and made errors in much of her fact-finding.

ALSO READ: Sexual harassment lawsuit vs. former BC RCMP spokesman settled

Merrifield alleged his superiors waged a seven-year campaign to damage his reputation that included punitive transfers and unfounded criminal accusations after he took part in a federal Conservative nomination meeting in Barrie, Ont., in 2005.

The Canadian Press

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

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

Just Posted

VIDEO: Saanich councillor takes residents along for virtual e-bike ride through the CRD

Coun. Colin Plant is taking route requests for future cycling videos

Innovative free fitness program targets Victoria Royals fans

Program shows impressive results during follow-ups with the men who participate

Personal, business bankruptcies down in British Columbia

New 2019 figures were released before COVID-19 pandemic

Social media a blessing and a curse during time of crisis: B.C. communication expert

‘In moments of crisis, fear is very real and palpable,’ says SFU’s Peter Chow-White

West Shore woman’s dog found in Colwood more than two weeks after going missing

Isla went missing on March 10 and was found 17 days later

B.C. is seeing the highest rate of COVID-19 recovery in Canada, and there’s a few reasons why

British Columbia was one of the first to see rise in COVID-19 cases, and has also switched up testing

COVID-19: A message from the publisher

We will be making some changes to our print editions during these unprecedented times

B.C. Ferries passengers staying away, as asked, during COVID-19 pandemic

Ferry corporation says ridership down 70-80 per cent over the last week and a half

Sewers stitch masks to free up supplies for front-line health-care workers

“We have little old ladies sewing up a storm,” said Joan Davis

Experts weigh in on best handling of groceries during COVID-19 pandemic

Study suggests the virus can live for up to 24 hours on cardboard and up to three days on plastic

COVID-19 world update: Enforceable quarantine in NYC?; France orders 1 billion masks

Spain warns EU’s future at stake; New York governor calls Trump’s idea ‘federal declaration of war

B.C. COVID-19 cases rise 92 to 884, one more death, 81 in care

Outbreak action underway in 12 long-term care homes

B.C. veterinarians want to smooth the fur of COVID-19-worried pet owners

Vets expect to continue giving your fur buddies the help they need while social distancing

B.C. VIEWS: Small businesses need our help

Just as integral in neighbourhoods in Vancouver and Surrey as they are in Prince George or Kelowna

Most Read