Detective Constable Lindsey LeonardDetective Constable - Sex Offences Unit - Peterborough Police Services
When I was 8 years old, I drew a picture of myself as a police officer on horseback. An allergy so sensitive to horses that I would sneeze just looking at a photo put an end to my equine dream, but being a police officer was still all I ever pictured for myself.
The daughter of incredibly supportive parents and one older and one younger brother, “I can’t do it because I’m a girl” was never part of my vocabulary. My competitive nature in sports (and life in general) may have something to do with the determination and focus it took to become a police officer.
I completed Police Foundations at Fleming College and a Bachelor of Commerce Degree at University of Ontario. While I was completing my Police Foundations placement at the Peterborough Lakefield Community Police Service, I met a man who helped me follow my dream. Constable Dave McFadden (now retired) was my ride-along officer. We formed a bond that has lasted years. Dave’s commitment to his fellow officers through his work with our local and provincial associations left a lasting impression on me. He helped me along the hiring process and I even managed to have him as my coach officer once I was hired by PLCPS (nowPeterborough Police Service) in May of 2006.
After nine years in uniform patrol, I landed a Detective Constable job in our Drug Unit. I was proud to have this opportunity. It was a steep learning curve and not easy to witness lives and families turned upside down by drugs in our community. Only the second woman in PPS history to work in the Drug Unit, it felt a bit like unchartered territory, nonetheless I enjoyed my time and gained invaluable experience. After three and a half years in Drugs, I transferred to the Sex Offences Unit as a Detective Constable, where I am today.
Comforting a sobbing man as he detailed one of the most traumatic childhoods I could fathom, will forever change me. This man is why I became a police officer. I know this is where I belong.
Deputy Chief Farquharson recently mentioned some words spoken by a former Police Board member, Doctor Simons: “Competence and compassion” and their importance in a police officer. These words resonated with me.
They truly are the most basic foundation of a “good cop” and who I want to be.