Chatham-Kent police officer facing new charges

Chatham-Kent Police Service Headquarters. (Photo courtesy of the Chatham-Kent police)

A Chatham-Kent police officer on a leave of absence and charged with fraud is in trouble with the law again.

Cristelle Vanden Enden has been charged with possession of narcotics following a traffic stop by police in Leamington Tuesday night. The Ontario Provincial Police said a vehicle was stopped on Wigle Street for a traffic-related offence just before 10 p.m. on Tuesday and the officer discovered the driver was suspended from driving and not complying with conditions of a previous release order. The officer also found and seized a quantity of drugs and stolen property.

Vanden Enden, 44, of Chatham has been charged with possession of methamphetamine, cocaine, and other illegal drugs, possession of property obtained by crime, and has been charged with one count under the Reopening Ontario Act. John Miehl, 53, of Chatham and Brian Jacques, 37, of Leamington have also been charged with the same offences. Jacques also faces additional charges of failing to comply with a release order other than to attend court and one count under the Highway Traffic Act.

The accused have been released from police custody and are scheduled to appear in the Ontario Court of Justice in Leamington on March 8, 2021.

Anyone with information regarding this or any other incident is asked to call the OPP at 1-888-310-1122. Those wishing to remain anonymous can call Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-8477 (TIPS) or leave an anonymous online message at www.catchcrooks.com where you may be eligible to receive a cash reward of up to $2,000.

Vanden Enden was also arrested and charged with fraud and other offences in May of 2020 following an investigation dating back to December of 2019. Chatham-Kent police said they started looking into that case after a local citizen reported the theft of personal blank cheques on December 27, 2019. Vanden Enden is also facing undisclosed charges under the Police Services Act.

She was also charged following a drug complaint on March 21, 2020, but that charge was set to be withdrawn if she is eligible for and completes a program called Direct Accountability.

Chatham-Kent police said in a statement that they were made aware of the charges on Wednesday and Vanden Enden has and continues to be off work on a medical leave. Police in Chatham-Kent added they will conduct a Police Services Act investigation pending the outcome of the criminal charges.