Larry Ross says his former boss is a liar. In a Nation interview to respond to allegations by former Chisasibi Police Chief Harry Snowboy, Ross he feels betrayed and that he never breached his oath of discretion as a police officer.
“First of all I’m disappointed that Harry would outright lie about that,” said Ross, who was assistant police chief under Snowboy at the time. “I am well aware of the oath and at no time did I ever breach that oath.”
In a story last September, the Nation reported that Snowboy believed Ross overstepped his bounds when he launched an investigation into Snowboy’s alleged mismanagement of funds. Snowboy said that Ross broke the oath of discretion agreed to by every sworn-in police officer, and left him no choice but to suspend him.
But the charges were taken seriously and the band council suspended Snowboy on October 17, 2003. Ten months later, however, the band council exonerated and offered to reinstate the former police chief. Snowboy declined to rejoin the force. By this time, Ross had also left the Chisasibi police service with a severance package in his pocket.
“I never wanted to leave Chisasibi,” said Ross, who says he has applied for two open positions within Chisasibi’s police force. “I got along with most of the officers. The community members wanted me to stay there. They had a petition and a roadblock to keep me there. I would go back tomorrow if they’d rehire me.”
And Ross says everything he did was above-board.
“I spoke to officers and civilian staff that were duly authorized to deal with the allegations of misappropriation of funds against him,” he said. Ross still believes that since Snowboy, as director of policing, was solely responsible for the budget, the discrepancies he allegedly uncovered “pointed directly to Snowboy.”
Ross went on to say that he thinks Snowboy suspended him because of personal reasons. “The fact is that I served him loyally and [helped to] upgrade that Police department. I think he felt threatened that he was not an effective police leader and that I was, and he wanted to protect his job. When I was there, I basically ran the police department. I find it very insulting that he would do that to me. I feel I’m being almost punished for finding out the things that he did.”
Ross added that he did not want to make things worse by fighting with Snowboy so he decided to take the high road and leave the community after being approached by the band council to do so.