Montreal police request provincial backup to offset summer staff shortages
CTV News has learned Montreal's police force has put in a request with the Surete du Quebec (SQ) to provide provincial police backup over the summer to offset staff shortages and an expected increase in gun violence.
Montreal police have requested 30 provincial investigators, according to a source with knowledge of the request. The added officers would fill spaces left by Montreal police personnel on vacation.
Data compiled in late-April by the Journal de Montreal suggest there had been 36 instances of gun-related crime since the beginning of the year. At the time, a police spokesperson said gun crime tends to rise during warmer months, when more people are outside.
In mid-May, Montreal Police Chief Fady Dagher said his officers had made 107 arrests in connection with firearms and seized nearly 250 weapons since 2023 began.
Dagher made the announcement during his speech taking stock of his first 100 days as police chief on May 16.
He also said that he was surprised by the ages of those arrested, many of whom were as young as 14 years old.
“By 14-15, they say, ‘what the heck?’ My friend has a gun to protect myself. I’m going to have a gun to protect myself,” said Dagher.