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Day 1 for Timmins’ first Indigenous police chief


The Timmins Police Service (TPS) has officially sworn in its new chief.

Timmins Police Chief Sydney Lecky at the change of command ceremony on May 21, 2024. (Sergio Arangio/CTV News Northern Ontario)

Chief Sydney Lecky brings a wealth of experience from western and northern Canada and he told those in attendance at Tuesday’s Change of Command Ceremony that community partnerships and Indigenous reconciliation will be among his top priorities.

Both local city officials and Indigenous people in the area told CTV news that they see Lecky’s appointment as a turning point in the relationship between police and local First Nations communities.

Lecky took over command of TPS from outgoing Chief Denis Lavoie – who stepped out of retirement after almost 30 years to lead the local police service for the last six months.

Lecky is the city’s first Indigenous police chief and he said that his heritage is helping fuel his passion for both tackling crime and building community bonds.

Before his recent stint as the head of the RCMP’s Northwest Territories Branch, Lecky’s policing career has seen him lead officers in Kamloops, Terrace and MacKenzie, B.C. He has tackled organized crime, seen communities through natural disasters and been part of discoveries of unmarked residential school graves.

During the ceremony on May 21, speakers from the Nishnawbi Aski Police Service and the Mattagami First Nation said they see his experience and cultural awareness as “a step forward” for the city.

Lecky himself told the room that he has connections to Timmins, Ont., and that he feels that the community is a good fit for him adding that he has high expectations of his staff – but he also wants city officials to step up to lighten the load on his officers who are regularly tackling issues outside of their job descriptions.

With ongoing difficulties from the city’s opioid crisis and issues with police recruitment and retention at TPS many individuals CTV News spoke with following the ceremony said they have “high hopes” that the new chief will have a positive impact on the community. Top Stories

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