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Brantford Police ServiceChief Davis announces impending departure from BPS

Chief Robert Davis has advised the Brantford Police Services Board that he is moving on to pursue other opportunities where he will continue to positively impact public safety.

Effective May 1, 2024, Chief Davis began to transition responsibilities to current Deputy Chief Jason Saunders, who will serve as Interim Chief of Police.

Having joined the Brantford Police Service in September 2019, Chief Davis is the only Indigenous Chief in Ontario to have served with both Indigenous and non-Indigenous police services, then eventually leading a non-Indigenous police service. Chief Davis officially leaves the Brantford Police Service, June 21, 2024, which is National Indigenous Peoples Day.

Arriving at a time when Brantford was experiencing a high rate of fatal overdoses and a downtown with significant issues, Chief Davis lobbied for and promoted a stratified approach to public safety, with a push to utilize resources appropriate to the need, including municipal by-law enforcement officers, private security, and Special Constables.

This led to the creation of Special Constables to patrol the city’s downtown entertainment and education district. The deployment of the Special Constables has received praise from many, including the Downtown Brantford Business Improvement Association, who have seen benefits from this approach to public safety.

Within the service, Chief Davis focused on recruiting, hiring, and building a police service to serve the Brantford of today and the future. With a commitment to increasing diversity within the service, Chief Davis has focused recruitment efforts to hire diverse members from racialized communities to represent the demographics of the city. He has also focused efforts to leverage technology and innovation to fit the growing demands of the service, enabling officers to become more efficient in their operations. 

Chief Davis facilitated the restructuring of the police service and the creation of specialized units including the Tactical Intelligence Generated Enforcement Team (TIGER) and the High Engagement Action team (HEAT) with a disciplined philosophy on intelligence utilization. Chief Davis’ leadership also included extensive collaboration with provincial, national, and international law enforcement agencies. This has resulted in substantial seizures of drugs and guns locally and assisted investigations and seizures elsewhere.

This cooperation has also generated funding opportunities to allow for secondments from the Brantford Police Service to Provincial and Federal task forces. One of the more notable collaborations led by Chief Davis, with the support of Six Nations Police Chief Darren Montour, relates to the Mohawk Institute Residential School investigation, which demonstrates both Chief Davis’ and the Brantford Police Service’s commitment to reconciliation.

At this time, the Brantford Police Services Board would like to thank Chief Davis for his leadership and the positive changes he has brought to the Brantford Police Service, so it can continue to evolve and effectively serve the City of Brantford.

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