May 30th, 2024

Subjects in former police chief’s lawsuit yet to be served

By Medicine Hat News on May 2, 2024.

Former police chief Mike Worden, seen here addressing city council in November of 2020, has yet to officially serve those named in a lawsuit he filed earlier this year.--NEWS FILE PHOTO

@MedicineHatNews

The named subjects of a lawsuit by Medicine Hat’s former police chief have not been served 60 days after it was filed.

On March 1, a statement of claim from Mike Worden outlined that he was seeking a total of $1.85 million in damages from the local police service, City of Medicine Hat, three specific police officers and another woman.

As of May 1, those six parties hadn’t been officially informed that they are being sued, according to a list of activity on the file provided by the Court of King’s Bench. That typically occurs in weeks following a filing, though litigants have up to one year to serve notice to a respondent.

The News was first to report on March 20 that the lawsuit had been filed. At that point current police chief Alan Murphy said media reports were all he knew of the court action.

On Tuesday the MHPS confirmed it had not been served with the suit.

Worden was hired in early 2021 to lead the Medicine Hat Police Service after the Medicine Hat native spent a two-decade career with the Calgary Police Service. He resigned from the post in May 2022 stating in a letter to local officers that he was resigning for personal and family reasons.

Worden alleges in a statement of claim filed through a Calgary law firm that he was the subject of an internal smear campaign and accused of inappropriate online and sexual activity with the woman named in the suit.

That detracted from his ability to lead the department, he said, despite an investigation by the Medicine Hat Police Commission reportedly finding “no wrong doing.”

The allegations have not been proven in court, nor have any of the respondents filed a statement of defence.

In Alberta, potential claimants have a two-year deadline to initiate civil suits, and then a one-year deadline to serve other parties or apply for an extension. If not served the suit is nullified.

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