VicPD deputy chief looks to retirement

'Compassionate' police officer will leave post in September

Deputy Chief John Ducker is calling it quits after 34 years with the Victoria Police Department.

Ducker posted the announcement to his police blog May 15, chronicling some of his proudest achievements with VicPD over the years.

“It was a difficult call for me in deciding not to compete for the upcoming chief’s position at VicPD. But with the standard chief constable term being five years, the prospect of committing to another five years of police work was too much for me and my wife at this stage of the game,” he wrote.

Among his best memories, Ducker cites being possibly the first officer in Canada to arrest a suspect by reading them their charter rights.

“I watched Prime Minister Pierre Trudeau and Queen Elizabeth on the TV in the lunch room signing the (Charter of Rights and Freedoms) into law on the 17th of April 1982 and as the ink was drying I was sent to a shoplifter at the old A&B Sound Store on Yates,” he said on his blog.

Retired 26-year VicPD veteran Bill Naughton, a former inspector who worked with Ducker in management, recalled his former colleague as bringing a steadying hand and a big-picture vision to the department.

“I think John was always someone who had that very grounded, pragmatic view of people and issues,” Naughton said. “He had that quality of being able to perceive situations clearly and a remarkable ability to articulate a vision around improvements in how we delivered services.”

While he was always “a good crook catcher,” Naughton said, Ducker’s legacy will likely be the improved collaborative relationships between the police and social service agencies in Victoria. His compassion for the people who struggle in society led him to support such preventative programs as community court and VICOT (Victoria Integrated Community Outreach Team).

Among the personal achievements Ducker is proud of, he helped increase VicPD’s officer numbers in 2007 and 2008, during one of its toughest budgetary crises.

“Former Victoria city manager Penny Ballantyne was a huge supporter of this effort as well and I’ll never forget her for the friendship and advice she offered,” he wrote.

Ducker will retire in September. To read his full retirement post, visit vicpd.ca/blog.

– with files from Don Descoteau

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

A decade into the 100-year blueprint for restoring the Bowker Creek watershed, Soren Henrich, director of the Friends of Bowker Creek Society, feels positive about the future of conservation and daylighting of the creek. (Nina Grossman/News Staff)
Ten years in, Greater Victoria’s 100-year Bowker Creek blueprint gets a boost

Victoria council passes several restoration recommendations

During a press event on March 6, Const. Alex Berube, media relations officer for the West Shore RCMP, addressed a deadly shooting that occurred in Metchosin the night before. (Devon Bidal/News Staff)
VIDEO: One man shot dead in ‘targeted incident’ on Sooke Road

Highway 14 reopens following multi-hour closure for investigation

Victoria man Brett Andersen is asking for people’s help to secure him one of eight free tickets to the moon. (Screenshot/@brettandersen Instagram)
Victoria man wants your help securing a free ticket to the moon

Japanese billionaire offering eight people a trip to the moon

A resurfacing of the tennis court in Metchosin is being eyed for the community. However, funding opportunities still need to be solidified for the project. (Michelle Cabana/Black Press Media)
Renewed surface eyed for Metchosin tennis court

Funding source must first be solidified in order for project to happen

The James C Richardson Pipe Band marches in a Remembrance Day parade on Nov. 11, 2019 in Chilliwack. Wednesday, March 10 is International Bagpipe Day. (Jenna Hauck/ Chilliwack Progress file)
Unofficial holidays: Here’s what people are celebrating for the week of March 7 to 13

International Bagpipe Day, Wash Your Nose Day and Kidney Day are all coming up this week

The Conservation Officers Service is warning aquarium users after invasive and potentially destructive mussels were found in moss balls from a pet store. (BC Conservation Officers Service/Facebook)
Aquarium users in B.C. warned after invasive mussels found at pet store

Conservation officers were told the mussels were found in a moss ball from a Terrace pet store.

Hockey hall-of-fame legend Wayne Gretzky, right, watches the casket of his father, Walter Gretzky, as it is carried from the church during a funeral service in Brantford, Ont., Saturday, March 6, 2021. HE CANADIAN PRESS/Nathan Denette
Walter Gretzky remembered as a man with a ‘heart of gold’ at funeral

The famous hockey father died Thursday at age 82 after battling Parkinson’s disease

Donald Alan Sweet was once an all star CFL kicker who played for the Montreal Alouettes and Montreal Concordes over a 13-year career. Photo courtesy of Mission RCMP.
Ex-B.C. teacher who was CFL kicker charged with assault, sexual crimes against former students

Donald Sweet taught in Mission School District for 10 years, investigators seek further witnesses

(Black Press Media files)
Medicine gardens help Victoria’s Indigenous kids in care stay culturally connected

Traditional plants brought to the homes of Indigenous kids amid the COVID-19 pandemic

Personal protective equipment is seen in the COVID-19 intensive care unit at St. Paul’s hospital in downtown Vancouver. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
$16.9 million invested to improve worker safety, strengthen B.C.’s food supply chain

Money to be used for social distancing, personal protective equipment, cleaning, and air circulation

More than ever before, as pandemic conditions persist, the threat of data breaches and cyberattacks continues to grow, according to SFU professor Michael Parent. (Pixabay photo)
SFU expert unveils 5 ways the COVID-19 pandemic has forever changed cybersecurity

Recognizing these changes is the first in a series of steps to mitigate them once the pandemic ends, and before the next: Michael Parent

Kevin Haughton is the founder/technologist of Courtenay-based Clearflo Solutions. Scott Stanfield photo
Islander aims Clearflo clean drinking water system at Canada’s remote communities

Entrepreneur $300,000 mobile system can produce 50,000 litres of water in a day, via solar energy

Most Read