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Bella Coola woman taking province to court over alleged illegal search

Bella Coola woman taking province to court over alleged illegal search

A Bella Coola woman says she was humiliated by the RCMP.

Kimberly Mack is suing the province for what she calls an illegal search that failed to turn up any trace of drugs and is scheduled to appear in Bella Coola provincial court today.

Court documents indicate the Mounties had received an anonymous tip that Mack’s vehicle was transporting marijuana and crack cocaine.

She and a group of friends and family, including her three young children, were returning from a potlatch in Vancouver when two officers arrested Mack and searched her vehicle.

Mack says the experience has left her very angry towards the police and that she wants an apology.

Douglas King of the Pivot Legal Society, who is representing Mack in court, says the case is about how small communities, especially aboriginal communities, are policed.

He says it highlights the importance of proper legal mechanisms that keep police accountable in remote, northern communities.

He adds the search had a hugely negative impact on his client’s reputation in the small town, saying her family business was hurt, and she had to withdraw her child from school for a month.

None of the allegations have been proven in court.

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