Legal proceedings for the embattled mayor of Surrey, BC, are set to begin in Surrey Provincial Court on Tuesday afternoon.
Doug McCallum, a veteran municipal politician, was charged with one count of public mischief on Dec. 10, 2021.
The charge stemmed from an investigation into his claims that someone ran over his foot at a Save-On-Foods parking lot during an altercation with opponents of the city’s police transition last September.
McCallum has previously declined all comment on the matter while it’s before the courts.
Petition urges City of Surrey to not pay for mayor’s legal fees in alleged mischief case
It’s unclear whether McCallum will appear in person or by phone for the proceedings, scheduled for 2 pm PST.
He has retained one of the priciest defense lawyers in Vancouver – Richard Peck, who also defended Huawei’s Meng Wanzhou from a United States extradition request.
According to the Criminal Code of Canada, public mischief includes “making a false statement that accuses some other person of having committed an offense.”
Code of Conduct complaint filed against Surrey Mayor Doug McCallum
McCallum claimed that on Sept. 4, 2021, a woman ran over his foot with her car in the grocery store parking lot.
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He told reporters at the time she was canvassing for signatures to oppose the city’s planned transition from the RCMP to a municipal police force, and that she “clipped my knee and my bottom leg and ran over my foot at the same time and then took off . ”
McCallum said he finished his shopping, then went to be X-rayed at Peace Arch Hospital where he was told the soft tissue in his foot was “very badly bruised” from the vehicle strike.
Surrey mayor facing code of conduct complaint in wake of public mischief charge
A public mischief charge was laid by a special prosecutor, not the Surrey RCMP.
The city’s hotly-contested transition from the Mounties to the new Surrey Police Service is currently underway.
The City of Surrey has previously confirmed by email it will pay for the McCallum’s legal defense as per the terms of its indemnification bylaw.
As of Monday evening, nearly 16,000 Surrey taxpayers had signed an online petition insisting the mayor pay his own legal costs, as the alleged incident occurred on a Saturday, while McCallum was out shopping on his own time and not in the midst of city business.
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