Township of Esquimalt: 2023 – Q3

As part of our ongoing Open VicPD transparency initiative, we introduced Community Safety Report Cards as a way to keep everyone up to date with how the Victoria Police Department is serving the public.  These report cards, which are published quarterly in two community-specific versions (one for Esquimalt and one for Victoria), offer both quantitative and qualitative information about crime trends, operational incidents, and community engagement initiatives.  It is hoped that, through this proactive sharing of information, our citizens have a better understanding of how VicPD is working toward its strategic vision of “A Safer Community Together.

Esquimalt Community Information

Operational Update
The summer quarter kicked off with a very busy Canada Day as we returned to pre-COVID festivities in the city. Our officers, reserves, and staff were on hand to  ensure the Canada Day events in Victoria were safe for everyone.

We know traffic safety is a concern for the Township, and it remains one of our top priorities. The Traffic section has been conducting proactive work at a number of target intersections and locations. With school coming back in session in September, we also focused efforts on safety through education and enforcement around school zones. This was a coordinated effort with members of the Traffic Section, Reserve officers, and VicPD Volunteers.  

Major Crimes detectives had success in arresting an arson suspect who is suspected of causing more than $2 Million in damage in Victoria and Nanaimo, and were a contributing agency to a large financial fraud file. VicPD’s Strike Force also assisted with surveillance on a number of files for outside agencies which have led to arrests.

We also welcomed five new officers to VicPD in July as they completed their first block of training at the Justice Institute of BC.

Calls for Service
Quarter 3 saw a jump in the overall calls for service for Esquimalt, as we often see at this time of year, but dispatched calls were in-line with the same time period last year.  
When we look at the 6 broad call categories for Esquimalt, we see a significant jump in the number of calls for social order, which is also higher than the calls for service over the same period last year.  

Files of Note
File: 23-29556 
On August 12, officers were called to assist an 82-year-old female who was assaulted while walking her dog behind a school in the 600-block of Lampson Street. The complainant’s injuries were minor, and the suspect was arrested shortly after

File: 23-29040  
On August 9, VicPD received information from RCMP about a possible stolen dinghy boat abandoned in the water, near the 400-block of Foster Street. Officers retrieved the boat, confirmed it was stolen and were able to return it to its owner. Stolen fishing gear was also recovered and returned after referencing the description with a previous file. 

Large Demonstration Activity
We also saw a significant event on the Legislative grounds in Q3, when two opposing groups demonstrated on the same day, with approximately 2,500 people in attendance. The tension and conflict quickly escalated and violent action led to a call-out for all available officers working that day to attend. With the continued tension and dynamics, and the size of the crowd in attendance, we determined that the environment was no longer safe for planned activities, such as speeches and a march, to continue and we issued a statement asking everyone to leave the area.

VicPD Volunteers conducted Bike Patrol and Foot Patrol shifts throughout the Township this summer. Although they can’t respond to incidents in progress, their presence provides a deterrent to crime and because they are connected by radio, they can call in anything they observe directly to E-Comm. 

Cst. Ian Diack continues to support our local business community through Project Connect, where he attends various businesses in the Township on a routine basis and engages business owners and staff. This is an ongoing effort to build relationships with the business community and provide crime prevention suggestions. 


Traffic officers and VicPD Volunteers also conducted Back to School speed awareness throughout Esquimalt over the first two weeks of September. Traffic officers were highly visible in our school zones and used a combination of education and enforcement to enhance the safety of staff, students, and their families. This was accompanied by a Back to School safety campaign on our social media channels.  

Finally, we welcomed 12 new VicPD Volunteers at the end of August. We are now at 74 civilian volunteers, which is the largest our program has been in recent memory. 

The summer quarter is one of our busiest times for Community Engagement, with attendance and participation in numerous events and festivals, and a lot of opportunities for our officers to interact with the public during tourist season. You can find many of our Community Engagement activities on our social media channels, but it’s difficult to capture all the ways that our officers are proactively reaching out to citizens on a daily basis. 

In addition to Department-led activities, our Community Resource Officers were busy maintaining relationships with community partners and addressing concerns throughout the Township. Our officers are highly engaged with the Township’s community and regularly attend events, some of which are included below. 

On July 1, VicPD supported the Capital’s Canada Day celebrations, ensuring a safe and family-friendly event for everyone.  

On July 8, we celebrated both the Festival Mexicano and Festival of India

On August 9, Insp. Brown attended the Veteran’s March to observe and provide security for the event. 

In August, Chief Manak and other officers attended Music in the Park events. 

Chief Manak inspired youth at summer camps held at the Gurdwara.

On August 26, VicPD officers greeted Sachin Latti at the finish line as he completed 22 marathons in 22 days to benefit first responders and veterans. 

September 8-10 Insp. Brown and several Special Duty officers supported the annual Rib Fest event at Bullen Park. The event was a success with only a few minor incidents.

On September 25, VicPD hosted the Aboriginal Coalition to End Homelessness for a matinee movie. 

The removal of School Liaison Officers and new restrictions on police attendance to local schools continues to be of utmost concern and provides a challenge for community engagement as we moved into the back-to-school period. This effort is ongoing with the Chief, Insp. Brown, and community partners.  

At the end of the 3rd quarter, the net financial position aligned with the budget approved by the Police Board and approximately 2% above that approved by councils. Salaries, benefits, and overtime were in line with the approved budget. Expenditures for retirements, building operations, and professional fees were over the approved budget. Capital expenditures were below budget and are expected to remain below budget due to the cancellation of a capital project to preserve reserve balances and as a result of reductions made to the capital reserve through the budget process.