RCMP and Prairie Bible Institute acknowledge abuses, police aren’t laying charges

There will be no justice for survivors of abuse at Prairie Bible Institute.

RCMP say that although 10 former students or staff kids from Prairie Bible Institute reported abuse to the force there are no charges being laid. Given the files were handed over to the Calgary detachment it’s interesting this announcement was made by a member of the Three Hills RCMP.
The Calgary Herald:

Three Hills RCMP Sgt. Joe Sangster said Tuesday police recently concluded their investigation and are planning on providing a public update as early as next week.

He said no charges have been laid and estimated that approximately 10 people came forward to police.

“We investigated every one of those complaints and there’s no information or no evidence to support any charges,” said Sangster.

Approximately 10 people? This is a police force which doesn’t know how many complaints were laid?  Not only was abuse reported to police, abuse was also reported directly to Prairie Bible Institute:

PBI president Mark Maxwell said the school’s own review turned up a half-dozen claims of sexual abuse.

How many claims of emotional, physical and spiritual abuse did PBI receive? Abuse was also reported to Calgary Centre Street Church,  which brought in by PBI in December as an independent 3rd party. Centre Street Church was let go by PBI in March.

In addition, the Centre Street Church in Calgary was brought in as another place for former students to bring forward complaints and they received “some” since January.

Prairie Bible Institute went to media in November after taking Facebook pages where former PBI attendees gathered to talk about the abuse they suffered while on PBI property to the Three Hills Alberta RCMP. Spiritual and emotional abuse had been talked about, as well as physical and sexual abuse at the 90-year-old institution.

Most of the allegations date back to the 1980s and 1990s, an era when entire families lived on campus and it offered schooling to children as young as kindergarten.

“They were mostly personal, family domestic complaints,” said Maxwell.

They were not forwarded to police, he said.

PBI abuse survivors were not granted the independent third-party they had requested to investigate the school milieu. A board member assigned to survivors quit and some PBI alumni harassed survivors, including a US minister who threatened to sue abuse survivors.
Alumni, under the authority of PBI set up a ‘Healing Team‘ to ‘befriend’ abuse survivors, and while denying it, I believe set a goal to bring survivors to PBI for ‘reconciliation’. To date, information is  that the Healing Team brought a U.S. survivor to PBI, which further alienated survivors seeking justice, admissions, investigation transparency and a clear policy by the school.

PBI President Mark Maxwell says,”Most of the allegations date back to the 1980s and 1990s.” Not all. As recently as 2004 PCA (the high school started by PBI) did not report the sexual assault of a student. The parents of the student went to police, the abuser was convicted and PBI paid out about 20 thousand dollars. The case of Carmen Wesley was covered by Global News. She alleged she was sexually assaulted in 2006. PBI did nothing.

There will be no justice, the Canadian criminal justice system cannot help PBI abuse survivors. The only recourse left is civil suits for the few willing to take on a culture at Prairie Bible Institute which harboured criminals , a culture where abuse of various kinds was tolerated. This goes beyond numbers of reports, beyond what was condoned in the past at what was called the Bob Jones University of the north. The culture of the school was so toxic, it is not surprising many who were abused will never come forward. Now that justice has been denied, what is left for those who stood up and did what was right by reporting? It’s likely this will be the only apology PBI abuse survivors see from the institution.

Prairie Bible Institute supposedly took information from the professionals at Centre Street Church and developed an abuse prevention policy the past few months.  The school has been in decline financially the past few years and student enrolment is down significantly.  The abuse policy is not yet public, one of the requests of PBI abuse survivors is that no student go through the neglect, cover-ups, silence and harassment they have been through. Update: A  partial draft policy (Sexual Assault and Rape) is posted at Prairie Bible Institute Open Group on Facebook. https://www.facebook.com/groups/pbi.open/permalink/321599461259709/ 

 

 

 

While I did not hold out hope RCMP would be able to bring evidence to the Crown that would warrant charges in one or many cases, this confirmation is heartbreaking.

‘Approximately 10 reports’,  ’half-dozen claims’… these reports and claims have names. We are talking about lives. Individuals. One abused is one too many.

Update: What kind of political games are going on with the RCMP?

Three Hills RCMP Sgt. Joe Sangster said Tuesday police recently concluded their investigation and are planning on providing a public update as early as next week.

Oh? And a statement to The Calgary Herald by a secondary RCMP detachment isn’t a public update?

Why were the ‘approximately 10 people’ who reported to RCMP Calgary not informed that RCMP Three Hills was going to release this information yesterday?  Is this the kind of treatment victims are supposed to meekly accept? How hard would it have been for the investigators who handled these complaints to have fired off an email to the PBI abuse survivors who trusted they would be treated with dignity and respect?
Is there a political pissing contest between two RCMP detachments going on? Looks that way to me.
I would suggest every survivor who contacted the RCMP call up the investigator you dealt with one more time and take your power back – ask why you were not afforded the dignity of a heads up. It is one thing for the public to learn through media, it is quite another for complainants. I wouldn’t expect an honest answer, but I’d ask anyway – every one of you deserve the opportunity to ask. I don’t believe in shooting the messenger, but I do believe in asking the messenger why, what how, when a serious and important message comes at you second-hand.  You aren’t political pawns.

About Bene Diction

Have courage for the great sorrows, And patience for the small ones. And when you have laboriously accomplished your tasks, go to sleep in peace. God is awake.
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53 Responses to RCMP and Prairie Bible Institute acknowledge abuses, police aren’t laying charges

  1. The Lord Ben Chung says:

    My Dear dew:

    I thought you might like to hear from me.

    Naming a perpe is the perfect thing to do. Whether the animal is lay dying, demented, or just wetted his pants, it does not matter, it matters to get the old fart out in the open. Why? for the lives he/she had destroyed, the little children he/she scarred for life (it is like being in a prison, so I thought). Why not? If he has the testostrone to do what he did when he was in power, should he not reap the fruit of his labour? Beware, that your sins will find you out, and what you sow, you reap. The Lord will revenge and require blood. Is this not enough? Did not the Lord kill his own son in this anger?

    So in my humble opinion, to actualize oneself, to throw off the sackles of evangelical god, to humble ask to forgive this animal, just NAME him for christ’s sakes. It is the teaching of the Lord, the Lord Ben Chung. Live free or die, and be brave enough to lead a useful life, and to make sure that this animal goes down in history knowing what he did was not just wrong, it was evil. Lucky that the Lord does not require to skin someone alive, or to crush his skulls, or to maim him or to gauge out his eyes or private parts. I hope this helps you to see why it is important to just simply name him. It does none of the options I have listed above. I hope this helps you to be a better and just christian and to follow the lord and the father of our lord jesus christ, Amen.

  2. Pingback: Blowing the Whistle on Prairie Bible Institute… « Trudy Metzger's Blog

  3. Pingback: Survey for Prairie Bible Institute abuse survivors: PBI releases abuse Q&A | Bene Diction Blogs On

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