Vernon-North Okanagan RCMP Supt. Jim McNamara (fourth from left) present medallions of appreciation to Vernon councillors Dalvir Nahal (from left), Catherine Lord, Bob Spiers, Mayor Akbal Mund and councillors Scott Anderson and Juliette Cunningham upon announcing his impending retirement. Coun. Brian Quiring is missing from photo. (Nick Nilsen/City of Vernon)

Vernon’s top cop retiring

Supt. Jim McNamara’s last day today following 33-year career

Vernon’s top cop is retiring.

Supt. Jim McNamara announced his retirement at Vernon city council Monday, prior to his last day Friday.

McNamara steps down following a 33-year career, the last eight in Vernon and the past two as the officer in charge of the detachment.

RELATED: Top officer named for Vernon-North Okanagan RCMP

“I wanted to take this opportunity to thank mayor and council for all of the support I’ve had here in Vernon,” said McNamara, prior to presenting council with medals of appreciation, a trend he started within the detachment last year to recognize RCMP members and support staff for their excellent work.

“I want to ensure everyone the detachment is being left in very good hands. Insp. Gord Stewart will be the interim officer in charge while the RCMP goes through their selection process.”

McNamara spent his entire policing career in B.C.

Prior to coming to Vernon as the operations officer in charge of day-to-day operations, he worked in an advisory role for the RCMP in the Southeast District office in Kelowna.

McNamara also headed watch and operations commands, command of the tactical troop and oversaw crime prevention and victims services for a large Lower Mainland department.

One incident clearly stands out in his memory.

“Probably one of the most dramatic and dynamic situations that stands out for me about my time in Vernon was the Westside Road pursuit on July 31 of 2012 that originated in West Kelowna and eventually terminated just north of Vernon during which one of our officers was being shot at,” he said. “A very traumatic situation for many of our officers and employees.”

Coun. Juliette Cunningham thanks McNamara for his “passion and empathy that you foster in your department in terms of the social issues we deal with.”

Akbal Mund knew McNamara before he took over as mayor in 2015.

“He’s just a great gentleman to deal with,” said Mund. “I really appreciate our friendship, and, as mayor, I’ve got to see the work he actually has to do. We appreciate all the effort he’s put in and done for the Greater Vernon community.”

McNamara requested late in 2017 the city fund six new police officers for the Vernon-North Okanagan detachment as part of budget deliberations for Vernon’s five-year financial plan. The city granted the request.

“I take a lot of pride that I’ve experienced both in my operations officer role and as the officer in charge in working with such a dedicated group of officers, support staff and volunteers,” said McNamara. “I often said that it never ceased to amaze me how successful our people were at catching criminals and bringing them before the courts, regardless of any resource challenges we may have faced.”

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

Just Posted

Goose cull a no go in Vernon

Tied vote meant defeat for councillors in favour of the kill program

Vernon skater wins double gold at nationals

Speedskater Nate Benn collects four medals at Canadian Youth Long Track finals

Vernon part of end of internment camp ceremonies

June 2020 marks 100 years since the end of Canada’s first internment camps, including one in Vernon

New Armstrong IPE president has deep roots

Heather King elected at IPE’s recent annual general meeting

Seedy Saturday returning to Vernon

Popular event hosted by Sustainable Environment Network Society set for March 21 at rec centre

VIDEO: Illicit drug overdoses killed 981 in B.C. in 2019, down 38%

Chief coroner says figures were down about a third in the province’s fourth year of the opioid crisis

Trudeau revisits blackface embarrassment during Black History Month

Photos and a video of Trudeau wearing makeup to darken his skin surfaced during last fall’s election campaign

Alleged racially-motivated vandalism concerns Penticton Chinese community

Chinese community worried fear surrounding COVID-19 coronavirus a cause for discrimination.

Kelowna mayor to request RCMP’s ‘unfounded’ sexual assault report

RCMP said the report was completed over a month ago but have yet to release it or make a statement

Criminality not suspected in Ellison trailer fire death

The body was discovered after crews responded to reports of a house fire

VIDEO: B.C.’s seventh coronavirus patient at home in Fraser Health region

Canada in ‘containment’ as COVID-19 spreads in other countries

Kelowna youth accused of killing 16-year-old released

The young woman was arrested on Feb. 21 and is facing one charge of manslaughter

Most Read