Ex-provincial police chief Martin Prud'homme, government reach settlement

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MONTREAL — A 29-month dispute between the Quebec government and the former head of its provincial police force has concluded with Martin Prud'homme announcing his retirement.

In a statement sent through a public relations firm, Prud'homme says he has come to an agreement with the provincial government that includes his retirement from public service.

It spells an end to legal action taken by Prud'homme against the government last year, Public Security Minister Geneviève Guilbault said in a statement.

Other details of the agreement were not disclosed, subject to strict confidentiality.

Prud'homme had been head of the provincial police since 2014 and was suspended with pay in March 2019, when Guilbault temporarily relieved him of his duties for reasons that were never made public.

In March 2020, the province's independent investigations bureau cleared Prud'homme, but his case was referred by the government to a civil service commission for an ethics probe last October.

In November, Prud'homme sued the government in an attempt to stop the process, a legal action that came to an end with the agreement as Guilbault withdrew the government's request to the commission.

“The past two years have been difficult for my family and loved ones," Prud'homme said in a statement. "I am making the decision to put an end to this litigation which has already deprived us of more than two years of our life."

The government is looking for a permanent provincial police chief, with Johanne Beausoleil in the role on an interim basis.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Aug. 30, 2021.

The Canadian Press

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