Prime Time Crime

(Prime Time Crime exclusive April 27, 2009)

Just another cruel joke

By Bob Cooper



I recall very clearly hearing on the news of the death of Richmond RCMP Constable Jimmy Ng in the early morning hours of September 15th, 2002.  Constable Ng was killed by a street racer who ran a Red light at an estimated 134 kmh and hit his cruiser so hard that both vehicles were knocked clear out of the intersection.  The killer was unhurt and fled the scene after being picked up by a second vehicle.  He never even checked on Constable Ng to see if he was still alive.  He’d just killed a policeman and couldn’t have cared less.

The following Saturday, along with hundreds of other police officers, I polished my boots, dusted off my medals, donned my dress uniform, and marched in Constable Ng’s funeral procession silently knowing that this ritual would provide our only comfort.  I met Constable Ng’s parents, Chris and Therese at the wake afterward and expressed my condolences.  Despite their overwhelming grief, they displayed a certain dignity, stoicism, and inner strength.  The qualities so often displayed by people who still have faith in the system.

The way the RCMP took care of Constable Ng’s parents was most impressive.  The police family at its’ finest.  One of the great benefits of the job.  I recall thinking that night that they should take what solace they could from it because their victimization was only beginning.

Predictably, the RCMP cleared the case in short order and charged Stuart Yau Chun Chan with Criminal Negligence Causing Death and Hit & Run.  A second man, David Guan was charged with being an Accessesory After the Fact by driving Chan away from the scene.

When their cases went to court, Chan, who was 21 at the time, got 18 months for Criminal Negligence Causing Death and 6 months for Hit & Run.  He also got two years probation and a whole 3 year driving prohibition.   His co-accused, Guan, got 3 years probation for being an Accessory.  Justice Harvey Groberman said at the time that he was satisfied that Chan has been seriously affected by the crash.  Most would feel that Constable Ng was rather more seriously affected than Chan but in court it’s all about the Accused.  The victim is simply an essential element, merely a footnote to the proceedings.

Justice Groberman went on to say “The burden of having killed Const. Ng will be with Mr. Chan for the rest of his life” then told him “You have clearly learned a great deal from this event” and wished Chan luck. 

Chris Ng tried to put the best face he could on it describing it as “more than we expected” which is sad in itself.  Guan walked free and Chan went off to serve his pathetic sentence.  But, like they say in the Infomercials, ‘Wait, there’s more’.

Having conned the Supreme Court of BC, Chan went on to con BC Corrections into believing that he had been rehabilitated and they released him after only serving 8 months of the 2 years he’d been sentenced to.  One of the parole conditions he agreed to was that he give presentations to teenage audiences on the dangers of street racing.  Once free, Chan demonstrated that, to him, “the burden of having killed Const. Ng” weighed no more than a sliver of balsa wood.

It seems that no one actually made sure that Chan complied with his conditions and made the presentations and by the time they caught on to him his parole had expired and he was no longer under any legal obligation to do so.  When the Corrections authorities phoned him he hung up on them. 

Another great con that is perpetrated on the taxpayers is that those who are ‘serving their sentences in the community’ are actually supervised and if they disobey their conditions, they’ll be ‘violated’ and sent back to complete their sentence.  The reality is that Corrections is a toothless bulldog because they haven’t nearly enough parole and probation officers to do the job effectively.  Politicians like it because it’s more cost-effective until there’s a problem, particularly during an election campaign.

Attorney-General Wally Oppal said “The parole board made the mistake of relying on the word of someone who’s a liar.  It’s too bad it wasn’t a condition that he do this within his parole period because then if he didn’t, his parole could have been revoked and he would have been returned to jail.”

They took his word? 

At least he spared us the usual phony platitudes and assurances that changes would be made and this will never happen again.  Because we all know that it will and that the only ones who will pay for this ‘mistake’ will be the Ng family.


Good job, Justice System.  Your work here is done.  Take 5 and smoke ‘em if you got ‘em.

I’m not a particularly religious person but I do believe in God and in some sort of after-life in which the injustices visited on innocent people like the Ng’s on earth are sorted out and made right.  I believe that Stuart Chan’s day of reckoning is coming and can only hope it is sooner rather than later. 

Prime Time Crime

Contributing 2009