5 years after her death, the spirit of RCMP officer Sarah Beckett ‘remains very much alive’

WatchConst. Beckett's police cruiser was hit by a drunk driver in Langford on April 5, 2016, and the 32-year-old mother of two died of her injuries in hospital shortly after. Five years later, she has not been forgotten.

The West Shore RCMP detachment says that Monday marks five years since the passing of Const. Sarah Beckett, a former officer who was killed by an impaired driver while on duty.

Const. Beckett’s police cruiser was hit by a drunk driver in Langford on April 5, 2016, and the 32-year-old mother of two died of her injuries in hospital shortly after.

In July of 2017, Kenneth Jacob Fenton, the driver of the vehicle that crashed into Beckett’s car, was sentenced to four years in prison.

Now, five years following the incident, police officers across the West Shore are claiming that “the spirit and memory of Constable Sarah Beckett remains very much alive.”

“We, along with the community she served, remember her each time we pass her memorial inside the foyer of the Detachment; when we visit the garden planted out front of the Detachment; or when we take our families to play at the Sarah Beckett Memorial Playground,” reads a statement from the West Shore RCMP.

The detachment emphasizes that since the incident back in 2016, patrol officers have strived to remove impaired drivers from the roads.

READ MORE: Huge turnout for first-ever Sarah Beckett Memorial Run

Five years later, RCMP are estimating that over 900 impaired driving-related charges have been issued following “successful” investigations, pointing to public support as part of the reason.

“We are very fortunate to have a supporting community that contributes immensely to the safeguarding of our public safety,” acknowledges the detachment.

Since her passing, West Shore RCMP, Const. Beckett’s family and the entire community have come together in order to honour her legacy in many ways, including the creation of the playground near Westhills Stadium, a memorial garden at the detachment, a scholarship and a memorial run.

Officers and friends are encouraging the community to “remember the sacrifice she made” the next time anyone passes by one of these legacy pieces.

Monday, fellow first responders gathered at the scene of the crash to pay their respects.

“We think about their families and their RCMP families and all of their friends, it’s such a tight nit little community here even though were growing if you go back five years it was a lot smaller then.” said regional Co-Ordinator of the Ambulance Paramedics of B.C. Ceremonial unit, Tamara McNay.

“She may be gone but she will always be in our hearts and well always be thinking of her and her family.”

As for Fenton, the Parole Board of Canada granted him limited overnight parole privileges earlier this year.

In January 2018, he was granted limited day parole to attend a treatment centre for alcohol abuse in the Fraser Valley for 70 days.

He was then granted day parole in September of 2019.

Now, the parole board has granted Fenton “four and three leave privileges,” meaning he is to stay at a correctional facility for four nights a week and is allowed to stay at his apartment, or another suitable residence, three nights a week.

The parole board said Fenton showed commitment to his sobriety, is in a relationship and has a full-time job.

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Ben NesbitBen Nesbit

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