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RCMP complaints commission demands laws to speed police response to complaints

VANCOUVER -- The Commission for Public Complaints Against the RCMP is calling for new legislation to force the Mounties to respond more quickly to complaints.

The demand comes as the commission has released its final report into the July 2003 in-custody death of Prince George, B.C., resident Clay Alvin Willey.

CPC spokeswoman Laura Colella says the RCMP took 14 months to respond to the commission's interim report examining the death of the aboriginal man. She says such a delay destroys public trust in the commission, but legislation setting timelines for a police response may fix that problem.

An earlier inquest ruled Willey's death was accidental, caused by a cocaine overdose, and those proceedings also revealed video of a hog-tied Willey being dragged by officers through the Prince George detachment and jolted multiple time by a Taser before being taken to hospital.

The CPC report says Willey was not treated with respect or dignity while being transported to cells, but the force used was reasonable, and Colella notes the multiple Taser use is less of an issue because of RCMP changes regulating use of the weapon since the death occurred.

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