Police in Delta have two new deputy chiefs — one promoted from within the department’s ranks, and one hired away from the Vancouver Police Department.
On Friday, Jan. 8, the Delta Police Department announced that Supt. Harj Sidhu is being promoted to deputy chief – operations, and that Supt. Michelle Davey, currently with the VPD, will be taking on the role of deputy chief – administration, responsible for the DPD’s COVID-19 response, training and human resources.
“The police board was extremely pleased to approve the appointment of both of these well-regarded and highly qualified policing leaders,” Mayor George Harvie, chair of the Delta Police Board, said in a press release. “This is also a milestone for the Delta Police Department. Supt. Sidhu will be the department’s first South Asian deputy police chief, while Supt. Davey is the first woman to be named to deputy chief here in Delta.”
Sidhu is currently responsible for frontline policing within the DPD. Some of the highlights from his career include the development and implementation of the DPD’s Delta Service Enhancement Plan — the department’s current service delivery model — as well as creating a computer software system that allows officers to account for their proactive activities. His work in the latter area has led to a number of successes, including a 25 per cent reduction in property crime offences, and has prompted ongoing interest from other police agencies.
He was also instrumental in introducing “business intelligence systems” that support evidence-based decision making throughout the organization.
Sidhu was the primary investigator on the high-profile Panghali homicide investigation, which led to a successful prosecution in a challenging case where investigators had to rely on circumstantial evidence.
“Supt. Sidhu has spent his 27-year policing career with the DPD, and is highly respected by his peers for being an approachable and inclusive leader. He has demonstrated a strong commitment to collaborating with the community and stakeholders in problem solving issues,” DPD Chief Neil Dubord said in a press release.
“I am proud to be selected as the first deputy chief from a diverse background,” Sidhu said in a press release. “I’m also excited about the opportunity to work alongside the exemplary women and men of this department. My goal is to continue to serve the citizens of Delta by providing a community-centered policing approach that focuses on building safe and healthy communities.”
When Sidhu isn’t at work, he enjoys being on the soccer pitch with his daughters, and also living a simpler life on the family’s blueberry farm.
Davey was drawn to Delta because of its reputation as a tight-knit community; one that is very committed to its police department.
Davey has 24 years of experience with the VPD, and is currently responsible for support services in the department’s investigations division. She is a recognized expert in mental health issues and has built innovative partnerships to help ensure those experiencing mental health challenges are not criminalized.
She has a strong background in administration, having developed the 2017-2021 VPD Strategic Plan and established many consultative processes with staff. She also oversaw changes to the VPD CompStat, making it more productive and efficient, and initiated a new cybercrime unit.
“Supt. Davey is well known for championing the role of women in policing, and played a key role in the creation of the BC Women in Law Enforcement Association,” Dubord said. “I’m delighted that she brings this passion, and of course considerable experience, to the Delta Police Department.”
“I am very enthusiastic about working in a smaller community,” Davey said in a press release. “I believe I will have a lot of opportunities to create great relationships and community partnerships in Delta, and I’m looking forward to the chance to make a truly meaningful impact here.”
Davey has a pre-teen daughter and enjoys hiking with her partner and her partner’s children, road cycling and paddle boarding.
The DPD began searching for a new deputy chief after Norm Lipinski left the position to take the reigns of the new Surrey Police Service in November.