Guilty of stealing drug evidence, Guelph police officer resigns
Published Thursday, September 26, 2013 4:08PM EDT
Last Updated Thursday, September 26, 2013 6:55PM EDT
A Guelph Police officer who previously pleaded guilty to criminal and Police Act offences will resign from his job with the service.
A sentencing hearing for Const. Chris Panylo lasted mere minutes Thursday morning before all sides agreed that Panylo’s resignation could bring an end to the matter.
In July 2011, Panylo was part of a group of officers that seized methadone from the Stone Road Mall parking lot.
Rather than turning the methadone in as evidence, Panylo replaced it with water and kept the methadone for himself.
He also injected himself with anabolic steroids while on the job.
A criminal charge and five Police Act charges were met with guilty pleas from Panylo.
Heading into Thursday’s sentencing hearing, the Guelph Police Service had wanted to fire Panylo – but said if he resigned within seven months, they would be satisfied with the outcome.
“It’s going to allow us now to move forward and put this matter behind us,” says Insp. Howard McGarr.
“It achieves the goal of removing the officer from the service who we felt would be a liability based on credibility and character.”
Panylo’s lawyer, Bernard Cummins, says the resignation allows himself a chance to “turn the page and start anew” in the community.
“It’s been a long road for him,” he says.
“He is at a stage now where it’s time to move on. He’s done a tremendous job of rehabilitating himself.”
Both sides agreed that Panylo’s drug addiction played a part in his behaviour.
“This is an officer with eight years of service, with an unblemished record in the past, whose addiction got a hold of him,” says Cummins.
McGarr says the service would look to get an “able-bodied, credible” replacement for Panylo on the streets.
Const. Matthew Drenters, who procured steroids on Panylo’s behalf and passed them on to his co-worker, was fined 20 days’ pay and sentenced to 40 hours of community service last month.