Arbitration hearings for two Bathurst police officers adjourned: City of Bathurst

The City of Bathurst says arbitration hearings regarding the recommended dismissals of Constable Mathieu Boudreau and Constable Patrick Bulger have been adjourned for now.

In a release, the city says the hearings, originally scheduled from March 18th to 22nd, "have unfortunately been adjourned due to a late request made by the union (Bathurst Police Association) acting on behalf of the police officers."

Tracadie businessman Michel Vienneau was shot and killed on January 12, 2015 after police received an anonymous Crime Stoppers tip he would be arriving from Montreal with an amount of illegal drugs.

Charges of manslaughter with a weapon, assault with a weapon, and unlawfully pointing a firearm were laid against the two officers in November 2015 after an investigation by Nova Scotia RCMP concluded that Vienneau was not involved in criminal activity.

Those charges were dropped in February 2017 when Judge Anne Dugas-Horsman ruled after a preliminary hearing that the prosecution failed to produce enough evidence to warrant a trial.

The city says it "vigorously objected to an adjournment" for the hearings, but an arbitrator decided otherwise.

The release says "The events of January 12, 2015, that have led to the disciplinary measures deemed appropriate by the Bathurst Police Chief, are so fundamentally troubling that the public trust and the community's interests deserve no less than the matter being fully aired in a public forum in front of an arbitrator."

A notice will be issued once a new date is set for the arbitration hearings under the Police Act of New Brunswick.