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Ottawa Police Service seeking approval to buy 200 new conducted energy weapons

The cost for the new CEWs and its cartridges will amount to over $1-million.
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Ottawa Police location on Elgin Street in November 2020. (Photo/Dani-Elle Dubé)

In order to keep up with a three-year plan to deploy conducted energy weapons (CEWs) to all sworn Ottawa police members, the Ottawa Police Service (OPS) says 200 more of the devices are needed at a cost of over $1-million.

In OPS’ upcoming board meeting on Monday, October 25, the service will seek approval for the new gadgets and their subsequent cartridges, which OPS says can be supported by the 2021 budget.

The CEWs themselves will cost $682,112.78 ($770,787.44 with HST), while $354,871 ($401,004.23 with HST) will be for their cartridges.

According to the OPS, the operational lifespan of a CEW is five years.

At the moment, the service currently possesses 1,000 CEWs.

The purchase, the OPS says, is needed for 2021 in order to maintain the lifecycle management plan. In 2018, the OPS board approved a three-year plan to deploy CEWs to all sworn members who operate in a frontline capacity. The plan has equipped and trained about 960 officers by the end of 2020.

“The focus this year has been on equipping and training new recruits and managing the lifecycle of the OPS CEW inventory,” reads the report, which will be presented at the meeting on Monday.

OPS sought quotes from the two Canadian distributors of CEWs and cartridges: Axon Public Safety Canada and M.D. Charlton Co. Ltd.

The costs provided by Axon are lower, therefore OPS recommends that the purchase be made through that distributor, although two cartridges in the amount of $104,471 ($118,052.23 with HST) will need to be purchased through M.D. Chartlon.

According to the report, the total cost to OPS’ budget for CEWs and cartridges is $1,055,235, which includes the nonrefundable tax portion.

The OPS says the 2021 budget contains the necessary funding for the purchase.

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