RCMP inspector leaves with pride, a few regrets

  • Mar. 2, 2011 12:00 p.m.
TERRACE RCMP inspector Eric Stubbs will be leaving soon for a promotion to superintendent in charge of the Prince George RCMP detachment.

TERRACE RCMP inspector Eric Stubbs will be leaving soon for a promotion to superintendent in charge of the Prince George RCMP detachment.

TERRACE is losing its senior-most police officer to the big city.

Terrace RCMP inspector Eric Stubbs has been transferred to Prince George to take over the job of superintendent Brenda Butterworth-Carr, who has been promoted to chief superintendent in charge of National Aboriginal Police Services in Ottawa.

As a result, Stubbs will be the new officer in charge of the PG RCMP detachment.

“I’ve been in Terrace six years and had a great time here,” said Stubbs.

“My family and I both enjoyed Terrace more than we have in any other community, so many great people. We don’t want to leave [but] the timing is right,” he said, adding he and his family want to stay in the north.

Stubbs arrived in Terrace in 2005 to take over as staff sergeant after Jas Basi left for the Lower Mainland.

When inspector Dave Fenson left for a position at the RCMP depot in Regina in 2008, Stubbs moved up to become the officer in charge here and was commissioned afterward to the position of inspector.

When asked what he’s most proud of in his time here, Stubbs points to his officers.

“What I’m proud of is the members and how hard they work and how dedicated they are,” he said, adding the successes they’ve had are a direct reflection on how hard they work.

Other proud moments are that the detachment managed to arrest, charge and convict a major drug trafficker and the creation of the Crime Reduction Unit, or street crew, which has led to meaningful change in the downtown, he said.

“These members work their tails off for me and I appreciate all their effort,” said Stubbs.

While here, he learned a lot about a bigger community – he transferred here from the Queen Charlotte Islands detachment – managing a larger office and working with the municipality and city.

“..and the support of the city has been fantastic,” he said.

But he does have a few regrets.

“One thing of significance is not being able to resolve the Tamara Chipman file,” said Stubbs, referring to the disappearance of a resident in September 2005 while she was attempting to hitchhike from Prince Rupert back to Terrace.

“I worked very closely with her parents. It happened early on [when I arrived here], and I very much wanted to bring a resolution for them about Tamara.

“I do regret a little bit leaving during a time…where there’s negative attention on the detachment,” he said, referring to the recent BC Civil Liberties Association report on policing in the province, which indicated Terrace had the most complaints and policing issues of the 14 communities the BCCLA visited for its report.

However, Stubbs received a lot of positive feedback from the BCCLA report from people coming into the detachment, calling or emailing.

“It’s very nice to hear the silent majority speak,” he said.

Before he leaves, Stubbs will set up the detachment’s priorities for the year.

He looks forward to Prince George and the challenges it will bring and knows there’s a lot of hardworking officers there.

Compared to the 37 officers at the Terrace detachment, the Prince George detachment is set up for 128 officers, he said.

Stubbs applied for the position when it came up in early January.

When Stubbs leaves depends on how long it takes for his house to sell.

“I think Eric will be missed,” said Terrace mayor Dave Pernarowski.

“[Eric’s] obviously been a great asset to the community over the years. He went over and above, above and beyond, his duties of the inspector of the detachment. He was closely connected to the community on a number of different levels.

“He was involved in many committees, a member of rotary…I think he had a real passion for Terrace. He’s disappointed, I think, that he’s leaving our community but also I know he’s excited for the opportunities that await him in Prince George.”

Pernarowski said when Prince George mayor Dan Rogers called and asked for a reference about Stubbs, Pernarowski would’ve liked to say that Stubbs should stay in Terrace but knew Stubbs has to move his career along.

“I’m really thrilled for him,” said Pernarowski.

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