And the media story continues that the mayors car was broadsided…

** UPDATED below the main story:

There are again, some serious issues with media reporting accurate information when relaying what happened in the accident involving the mayor in April of 2010.

CBC  online ran this story this evening, with a clip from  the CBC evening news, showing the photos of both vehicles and again, stating that the mayors vehicle was broadsided at a stop light. Meera Bains is the reporter, and one wonders if CBC actually even looked at those photos – which clearly show another story altogether – or confirmed details with the mayor  or RCMP. Certainly the mayor herself has not been eager to correct the media’s inaccurate reports over the last year.

This comes after The Province was asked to correct recent reports that also indicated the mayor was hit and a ” For the Record.” was printed in a later edition correcting the story. A reporter from The Vancouver Sun who printed inaccurate information relating to that 2010 accident refused to reply to a reader who asked for the source of her information and a correction.

Why does this matter you may ask? Because this latest report clearly focused not only on Watts recovery, but also campaign plans for the fall. And the media’s continual failure to get the story right, or even report the fact the mayor of one of largest cities is being sued in civil court with alarming allegations, is a slap in the face of the profession itself.

In particular from the CBC.

It is news anytime a mayor is being sued for anything, let alone an accident in which so much conflicting information was being given for so long. The mayors car was not broadsided, the mayor hit the other vehicle involved.  The details of that lawsuit can be seen here :

I have contacted Meera Bains and the CBC asking where she/ they confirmed the details reported in the story and that they re-check their source, and that a followup be run with the correct version.

** update 10:30 am.

While CBC has not printed a retraction or made note of their error to clarify their mistake to readers, the online version of the above story has now been altered to read  ” injuries sustained in car crash”, rather than ” when her vehicle was broadsided at a stop light”.

Neither a CBC staff member or the reporter involved have stated where the incorrect information was obtained that was reported in the evening news, nor have they edited out or aired a correction to the 2:38 minute clip at the above link, which shows both vehicles and the erroneous statements about who hit who in the accident.

CBC staff have been asked to air a correction to the story, and edit the story that is still posted on that link above, however since they have not, nor have they responded further, I have filed a formal complaint with the CBC Ombudsman.

*update April 14th, 2012 –

From CKNW:

Lawsuit against Surrey mayor going to court next year
Surrey/CKNW (AM980)
Laura Baziuk | Email news tips to
4/14/2012A lawsuit against Surrey Mayor Dianne Watts is going to court next year.Shawnene Redekopp is suing the mayor after the two were involved in a car crash.In April 2010, Watts and her husband were heading home from a work event when their SUV collided with Redekopp’s vehicle at 128th Street and 24th Avenue.All three were taken to hospital.Police at the time said alcohol was not a factor.There have been conflicting reports on who had the green light and who t-boned who.Redekopp is suing the mayor for driving without due care, among other allegations — which have not been proven in court.

The matter is set to go to trial in October 2013.

****UPDATE APRIL 27th, 2014: Documents entered to the Supreme Court of British Columbia on February 25th, 2014, indicate the liability trial has been adjourned – the matter was settled by mediation.

55 thoughts on “And the media story continues that the mayors car was broadsided…

  1. M1LK

    Hmm… I’m assuming that there weren’t any security cameras in the area… that said given the amount of damage and the quality of damage that both cars sustained it should be obvious that the sedan was T boned. It seems the media does not no the definition of a ‘T-Bone’ collision, especially when they’re attempting to claim that the White SUV was the recipient of such a collision.

    It should also be obvious that the way the front of the SUV crumpled that it was traveling at excessive speeds causing it to crumple in that manner.

    There are few ways that can cause that amount of front load damage to both vehicles.

    a) The white SUV was travelling in an X direction very fast collided with the sedan as it was turning.
    b) The white SUV was travelling at a normal speed when a the Sedan was thrown at the SUV with the drivers side of the car facing the white SUV with a tremendous amount of velocity.
    c) The dark sedan was stationary heading in the Y direction, when the White SUV came from the X direction and collided with the vehicle.

    I’m a university student and I’ve taken a few courses in Physics so I have an idea of the way momentum works.


  2. Gary

    I’m going out on a limb here, but I think that when the voters nuke the Lieberals in the next election, Ms Watts will become the new leader. All this crap looks to me like the Lieberals trying to keep any misdeeds out of the public eye so they can scream out ” fresh new start ” when the time comes.


    1. Laila

      CBC “temporarily deactivated” my commenting ability last night, citing an issue with my log in name, which they claim is my email address, which it is not. I did message Meera Bains and the CBC newsroom about the story, but have not heard back from either.

      -commenting ability returned this morning, 8 am.


  3. Kam Lee

    More media meddling laila. They seem to get their marching orders from up high. In the offices of the editor, and perhaps his lieberal friends? This is a common theme from the local media… ” If you can’t win, lie and cheat”, much like the liberals.


    1. Laila

      The 2:38 clip shown on the news really blows my mind. Where did Meera Bains get the info that the mayor was hit? Did the mayor herself mention it in the interview? Did Meera go on faulty memory? Did no one check the information and or photos before showing it province wide?

      Fact: Watts was travelling east bound on 24th that night.
      Fact: Redekopp was travelling North on 128th.
      Fact: Watts T-boned Redekopps car.
      Fact: RCMP deemed that Redekopp ran a red light, and a ticket was allegedly issued. No charges were laid.
      Also fact:

      – Early reports from RCMP stated there were no witnesses to the crash, that early indications were the mayor had a green light, although the husband of the victim came forward to media immediately stating the reports the mayor was hit and had a green light were incorrect, and that his wife said she had the green light.

      – Several months after the crash,RCMP reported the ticket – a failure to stop at an intersection violation.

      -from a writer for the White Rock Sun:

      The 24 Ave and 128 St. intersection is located at the corner of the Crescent Park Elementary school and controlled by a demand light system.

      The traffic lights are regularly green for 128 St., the road that Mrs. Redekopp was travelling on that night

      . For 24 Ave. traffic, the light remains red until someone drives up, stops on the sensor pad near the painted stop line, activating the signal change.

      Soon after the accident, Mrs. Redkopp claimed she had the green light while Dianne and Brian both said they had the green when they entered the intersection.
      For Watt’s version of this story to be true another vehicle or pedestrian would have had to trigger the lights to change it meaning another car or person would have likely crossed the street before the two cars hit, likely being visible to Mrs. Redkopp. There is no way the Watt’s SUV could have accelerated from a dead stop to the speed involved in this impact in such a short distance especially with wet streets. Early reports were that there were no witness to this crash and I know that neighbours were away that weekend and did not attend the accident.

      What is interesting to realize is that the light stays green on 24 Ave. for only nine seconds and that Mrs. Redekopp was eventually ticketed $167 by the Surrey RCMP for failing to stop for a red light, a charge she denied to me a month after the incident.

      Last night, the CBC ran this story, clearly stating the mayors car was broadsided, which is
      incorrect, and they along with several other media outlets who have been informed of this lawsuit, have refused to report on it. Unacceptable. Yes, the timing of the story sucks in light of her accident on the horse, but blatantly printing and airing televised reports with an incorrect version of the truth, which no one seems to have a problem with, is a big error on the part of Meera Bains and the CBC.


  4. Julie

    There are two sets of laws, in the judicial system. One law is for, criminal politicians and the elites. The other set of laws, is for the everyday BC citizens. We already knew who would get shafted and take the fall. We also know the BC media, all too well.

    BC is a province of special prosecutor’s. It doesn’t matter what crimes the BC Liberals are involved in, they never have to pay for their crimes. It doesn’t matter how you slice it Think back to, Campbell’s theft and sale of the BCR trial. . Think of, how many crimes the police get away with.


  5. ron wilton

    If a ticket had been issued to Mrs. Redekopp, I believe she would have disputed the charge in court. Clearly something neither the mayor nor the police would want to revisit.


    1. Laila

      CBC has now corrected/ altered the written version of the aired story from the 6pm news, from ” her vehicle was broadsided” to ” suffered injuries in a car crash” .

      However the 2:38 clip that aired on last nights evening news is still posted on the CBC story and still contains the same erroneous information on the accident.


  6. Randy

    I am new here,at yoursite, but if a long time reporter can just write total lies in the news and on the tv news, how do we know what is true of what we are seeing? If you didnt write about this I wouldnt know, so thanks for doing what you do.So when are we going to see this news about the lawsuit on the news, or is that too inconvenient for the mayor? CBC is going right downhill, they better do a new story on this lawsuit and accident.What is with all the love for the mayor anyways or dont these people ever go to Surrey. I had to go to Whalley for a new computer at the Best Buy and nearly got mugged in the parking lot, and that big fancy park at surrey central was full of homeless druggie people.


    1. Laila

      That will be the course of action should they not print and air a correction of the statement. The current ombudsman is Kirk LaPointe, formerly of the Vancouver Sun

      Of interest to all should be the CBC/Radio-Canada’s journalistic mission and values:

      To serve the public interest
      Our mission is to inform, to reveal, to contribute to the understanding of issues of public interest and to encourage citizens to participate in our free and democratic society.

      To reflect diversity

      We are committed to reflecting accurately the range of experiences and points of view of all citizens. All Canadians, of whatever origins, perspectives and beliefs, should feel that our news and current affairs coverage is relevant to them and lives up to our Values.

      We have a special responsibility to reflect regional and cultural diversity, as well as fostering respect and understanding across regions.

      To protect our independence

      We are independent of all lobbies and of all political and economic influence. We uphold freedom of expression and freedom of the press, the touchstones of a free and democratic society. Public interest guides all our decisions.

      To act responsibly and to be accountable
      We are aware of the impact of our journalism and are honest with our audiences. We do not hesitate to correct any mistake when necessary nor to follow-up a story when a situation changes significantly.

      The office of the Ombudsman reviews our practices against the standards set out in these policies. We openly provide the public with the means to judge and hold us to account by sharing with it research we may use to measure the quality and standards of our journalism.

      We manage our resources responsibly. We strive for journalistic excellence and best practices in all of our journalistic endeavours.

      Our Values
      We seek out the truth in all matters of public interest. We invest our time and our skills to learn, understand and clearly explain the facts to our audience. The production techniques we use serve to present the content in a clear and accessible manner.

      In our information gathering and reporting, we treat individuals and organizations with openness and respect. We are mindful of their rights. We treat them even-handedly.

      We contribute to informed debate on issues that matter to Canadians by reflecting a diversity of opinion. Our content on all platforms presents a wide range of subject matter and views.

      On issues of controversy, we ensure that divergent views are reflected respectfully, taking into account their relevance to the debate and how widely held theses views are. We also ensure that they are represented over a reasonable period of time.

      We provide professional judgment based on facts and expertise. We do not promote any particular point of view on matters of public debate.

      The trust of the public is our most valued asset. We avoid putting ourselves in real or potential conflict of interest. This is essential to our credibility.


  7. Sweet Bea

    Laila, I salute you for the courage and conviction you display in speaking truth to corrupt powers and media. And, you do it with such grace and tenacity, while the moles and rats at CBC, Global, et al and at various “authorities” are scurrying, dodging, deflecting, hiding…

    First and foremost, I do not trust the CBC news bureaus, particularly the BC operation.

    On several occasions I have personally observed specific events that were reported by CBC in blatantly false terms. Only complaints to the highest levels brought any response, and at that, their admission of wrong-doing was grudging at best.

    I used to be a big supporter of CBC, but in the last five years, my respect for them has steadily dwindled, to the point where it’s in a negative balance. I now believe that Canada would be better off without a CBC, at least we wouldn’t be hoodwinked thinking that we are being served anything close to the truth by the “public broadcaster” that our tax dollars fund.


  8. Loni Eliot

    I love watchdogs. Especially watchdogs of the media. And especially when it’s a member of the media watching the media and commenting on sloppy reporting. Keep up the good work, Laila.


    1. Laila

      Thank you for the kind words, both Loni and Sweet Bea- great name!
      Earlier this evening I posted a new comment to the CBC story, since my account was reactivated. I thanked CBC for altering the written article, but again asked that the correction be officially noted in a ” for the record” typed format so viewers would be aware a mistake had been made in their reporting.

      I also asked, again, that the CBC clip at the head of the article, 2:38 mins, be edited and a correction run on the next evening news to clarify that erroneous reporting that remains online in video format.

      Not only was the comment not posted after a reasonable amount of time to moderate, the video clip remains posted that contains the grievous error in detail for last years accident. Clearly they could edit this clip and remove it, and run a retraction. There has been ample tiem to rectify this situation since I messaged Meera Bains last night, and CBC this morning- and readers have informed me that I was not the only one. Jim Van Rassel contacted the CBC head office in Ottawa, and they called him back this afternoon to let him the online story had been corrected, but they did not address the video clip.

      A sad day when what used to be looked at as a bastion of reporting, takes so little care in the details that matter most. Yes, this lawsuit and the details surrounding it may be an inconvenient truth at an inopportune time, however in my experience there is never a convenient time for truth when it concerns someone who would rather it not be known.

      I have worked with CBC reporters. I am appalled at this entire scenario.


  9. In one ‘regular media’ rendition of the horseback riding injury this from Mrs. Watts: “The horses were galloping and my horse – I don’t know whether he bucked or kicked the horse behind me – but it went from there. I landed really hard on the saddle and CAME OFF and landed on the ground.”———-“LANDING ON THE GROUND was worse than being bucked.”

    Another ‘regular media’ rendition: “I came down and hard on the saddle. I KNEW SOMETHING WAS WRONG AND CAME OFF MY HORSE.”


  10. henry

    I would like to see some stats on the types of cbc stories that have run over the last 5 years. It seems to me that violent stories (car crashes, bears, violent crime, etc…) have dramatically increased. Anyone have any idea how this may be verified?


  11. Laila

    Lynn, that in an assumption that she did not dispute it, not fact – we don’t know what happened, that is the issue. I can’t imagine her not disputing it if it was issued, but again, let’s not be guilty of the same crime of the CBC.

    Glen, case in point, witnesses to a crime. Ask 10 people who saw the same thing and they will tell you 10 different stories.

    Henry, I have no idea how or who would even track that. CBC is clearly lacking in this story and I would like to know who/what/when/where/how that information about the mayor being hit was sent to the 6 oclock news with photos that contradict the words read along side it.


  12. Thanks Lailla – and I agree with your position – except for this. The horseback riding incident should not be dismissed so easily as it illuminates how ‘a new accident’ is handled by many of the same groups who have already been deconstructed in the motor vehicle accident news debacle.
    It is important to consider as well – that Mrs. Watts was transferred from Kamloops Hospital to Peace Arch Hospital – and the connected Foundation event that Mrs. Watts may have been attending the night of the motor vehicle accident. The injuries suffered by Mrs. Watts are also similar or in a similar region of the body to those that the news announced following the MVA – which if Mrs. Watts was not a proficient rider – and was not properly trained prior to the horseback riding incident – or not given the proper horse given her level of experience – may lead to civil action. Obviously her MVA injuries appeared to have healed to even consider a horseback ride, but as J.J. Gow BC Court of Appeal Justice stated: The tortfeasor (defendant) takes his victim as he finds him. This means that if there is any liability from the horseback injury that the injuries suffered from the MVA could come up as well as lying dormant.

    I mean – hey – the media chose to report that the Surrey mayor was injured in the MVA with Mrs. Redekopp – {along with other misinformation that at least one or two or three have now finally agreed were not truthful accounts} – and the Surrey mayor was sued for Mrs. Redekopp’s injuries but did not claim for injuries of her own {as I have previously indicated}, why not?

    There is a pattern of injury with Mrs. Watts – and she is an awful good sport about letting folks who have either been maligned as responsible or may be liable – off the hook.

    No – Lailla – I don’t think it is prudent to dismiss the matter of the new injuries out of hand – because injuries are a component of the primary story from the car accident – and may yet assist us with working through to the truth of this matter. Remember, this accident refreshed the opportunity for the same media to come back and retell the lie of the MVA – after Jim and you had proved it nonsense.


  13. Laila

    Interesting point Glen. ( and it is Laila, not Lailla…lol.. I am a stickler for names, especially when it is my own)
    I still think it is better to work through this from getting to the truth and facts behind the original incident that led to so many conflicting reports and where the source of that conflicting information came from. I still have a hard time believing so many reporters could get it wrong for so long – usually there is smoke where there is fire and remember the erroneous information that RCMP gave out following Robert Dziekanski. Did the RCMP at any time tell the media that the other woman hit the mayor? Did the mayors people say that? And why did the RCMP and the mayor allow that information to stand for so long. Very few reports actually stated the mayor hit the other vehicle.

    And yes, certainly since many news stories also reported she was at a work-related event that evening, which was again reported later to another writer that it was not, one wonders what the events of the evening where leading up that crash.


  14. Curt

    I was on the News1130 website this morning reading their story about the lawsuit filed against Watts. Comments were being made. This afternoon though …no comments to read, nor able to post.

    The media in this province sure do go out of their way to protect the chosen ones.


    1. Laila

      Surrey NOW has jumped in with official statement from the mayor

      Surrey mayor mum as driver sues Watts after crash
      By Marisa Babic, Surrey Now August 11, 2011 •Story•Photos ( 1 )
      Surrey Mayor Dianne Watts is being sued in connection with a car crash in April, 2010.
      Photograph by: file photo, Surrey NowSURREY – Surrey Mayor Dianne Watts is being sued in connection with a car crash in South Surrey last year.

      Watts and her husband, Brian Watts, were driving home from a civic event on April 23, 2010 at around 11 p.m. when their white Cadillac SUV was involved in a collision with another vehicle at the intersection of 24th Avenue and 128th Street.

      The mayor suffered a cracked rib and soft tissue damage in the accident and her husband sustained soft tissue damage. The sole female occupant of the other vehicle, a sedan, also sustained serious injuries.

      The lawsuit filed in BC Supreme Court by Shawnene Marie Redekopp claims that Watts was driving without due care and attention when the crash happened and is suing for damages.

      In her notice of civil claim, Redekopp claims the injuries from the accident caused pain and suffering, loss of income and loss of potential earning power.

      In her response to civil claim, Watts denies the allegations.

      Watts, who is recovering from two fractured vertebrae sustained in a horseback riding accident in July during a family vacation, was unavailable for comment on Thursday.

      But she offered a prepared statement through city hall communications officer Tara Foslien.

      “I will not be commenting on the lawsuit,” Watts wrote. “The car accident, the investigation by police and the independent investigation by ICBC and interviewing of witnesses and the information resulting from that, I am not privy to.

      “I understand that in any accident where ICBC has sided with one party, the other party has the right to sue. I believe the only recourse for the Redekopps is to do just that. And they have exercised that right.”

      Read more:


  15. North Van's Grumps

    “…she (Watts) offered a prepared statement through city hall communications officer Tara Foslien.”

    Why is a City Hall staff person picking up the phone, on behalf of an individual, who just happens to be the Mayor of Surrey, and fielding questions for Watt who has been named in a lawsuit?

    Does this then mean that Surrey City Hall, taxpayers, could be on the hook for the accident?


    1. Laila

      Apparently she is well enough to spend time with CBC to talk about running for mayor for another term, but not well enough to take interviews today about the lawsuit. Marisa Babic and another writer I have never heard of, are the only two to get a statement from her… but yes, did we all pay for that time spent on a personal matter? But wait…..

      The story from The Now states the mayor was attending a civic event. “civic event”

      That directly contradicts the information provided to another writer in a freedom of information request he made and received reply to after the accident.

      In his words:

      “), I filed a freedom of information request with city hall asking questions similar to the following:
      – What was the nature and purpose of the official function that Mayor Watts and her husband were attending on the evening of Apr. 13, 2010?
      – Where was this event being held and who was responsible for hosting it?
      – Was this a catered event, was alcohol being served and was the party licensed?
      – Were any other members of council or senior city of Surrey staff members in attendance?
      When I received my FOI response, none of these questions were answered with the official reply stating that this event had actually been a private function and because of this fact my questions were mute. What I have been told by several community sources is that the event in question was a dinner party held at a large mansion in Ocean Park at the home of a prominent Surrey business leader”

      Giddy up.


  16. One little word, please, in defense of CBC: their annual budgets have been slashed ever since “Reform” became part of our political lexicon. “The Harper Government” is proudly on record as vowing to rid Canada of its public broadcaster by starving them into submission.

    In other words, they (too) are going through very hard times. Best plan, I think, would be for citizens to stay in touch with CBC — and with our MPs — placing the blame where it belongs: on the Harper Government.


    1. Laila

      A victory for accountability in journalism at the CBC this evening.

      After filing a formal complaint this morning to the CBC Ombudsman about the way CBC dealt with this inaccuracy – and allowed it to continue for so long – I received a form email this afternoon, stating that the Ombudsman’s office was closed for a few days for vacation.

      Two hours later, an email from Kirk LaPointe, CBC Ombudsman, while on his vacation, because staff forwarded him the email as per the serious nature of my complaint. He forwarded it to two executive editors in Vancouver, who dealt with this quickly.

      I just opened an email from 7:30pm, from a CBC producer in Vancouver who removed the video and did a correction to the online story, and whom apologized for how long the correction took. He is looking into why it took that long, but I did ask they they air a correction on the next subsequent newscast so viewers were aware of the inaccuracy, since RCMP have now confirmed that Watts hit the other vehicle, who they say ran a red light.

      Kudo’s to CBC Ombudsman Kirk LaPointe for handling this while on vacation and in such a prompt manner once it reached him. My gratitudes for a speedy resolution.


  17. islandcynic

    Facts should be in the public domain. Not swept away or hidden from view. It does not matter that in this accident it was the mayor of Surrey. It may be unfortunate, but it does not matter. If our elected leaders, or employees, are under a microscope then perhaps they should not offer to stand in for these types of public positions. Integrity belongs in all aspects of ones life, not the ones we pick and choose.


  18. Laila

    Well, once can only hope the facts are shown in court either way – the RCMP traffic unit found Redekopp ran a red light and ticketed her- they have confirmed that now, and according to the NOW story ICBC ruled in Watts favour.

    Still leaves the questions about why and where all the misinformation came from and continued for so long, and why the city staff would respond to an FOI made in reference to the civic event she stated she was coming from, by stating there were no records because it was a private event she attended….


  19. workforfun

    Ethics and integrity seem to have taken a back seat since the BC Liberals came to power. The so called leaders of the BC political regime have done nothing but confuse, hide, deflect and lie about what is happening or has happened in government – both provincially as well as locally.

    When the premier of British Columbia (Campbell) lied on an almost continuous basis, this set the standards for others to follow. This they have done willingly – especially the BC Liberal party. No where has there been an honest statement from this reprehensible government – in fact now, all government statements are viewed with a jaundiced view of being “out and out lies”. It is a sure sign of a corrupt regime when the people of the province take government statements as deliberate lies. This unfortunately, is the view that the average British Columbian has of the government officials that have taken an oath to do their best for the people and the province of British Columbia.

    It is doubtful if Watts will ever be believed again as an ethical person. Thanks ( *edited)


  20. Curt

    With pics and stories in local papers (over the years) of Ms. Watts and the lieberal party members (Falcon, Hogg, COC etc.) and her name being put out there for her to run as leader of the lieberal party, I have no doubt her connections to the party, as well as the developers who have basically taken over Surrey City Hall, (just look around the area) I have no respect left for her or her civic party. It is time the people of this province took back their government be it provincial or municipal, for those elected to look after the needs of “every citizen” of this province, be it young, old, poor, rich and those in between.


  21. a reader

    good article, but why is this referred to as the “media” story? this was a CBC story. there are dozens of other print, TV, radio, and online outlets in BC, and i believe it’s unfair when we repeatedly (because i see/hear it done ALL the time) paint them all with the same brush stroke. just my 2 cents.


    1. Laila

      This is referred to as a media story, because if you read the links on the first, breaking story, you will see that more than a few media outlets incorrectly reported details of this accident when it happened, and continued to report incorrect information for over a year about this accident, even up to the recent horse riding accident had by Watts. Her recent accident resulted in several media outlets incorrecting rehashing the 2010 accident by stating again, that she was hit by the other car, when in fact RCMP confirmed yesterday that she hit the other vehicle, who allegedly ran a red light when she was hit. The Province was contacted and printed a “For the record ” on it, the Sun was contacted and did nothing to correct the story, and this was the result of the CBC misinformation. The question that sparked my interest was that I found it very hard to imagine that so many reporters could get a very important detail of the accident wrong after speaking to RCMP and city hall reps. Not all did, there were a couple of stories that came out with the accurate detail of who hit who. But for the most part, those incorrect stories were allowed to continue to circulate for a long time, and the incorrect information recently reported was also not corrected by the mayors people or the RCMP.

      I know a lot of reporters in the lower mainland, all of whom are very good and very diligent. There are many who could produce some truly amazing work if their bosses would let them!! I am just working on a post about this, check back in a bit!


  22. ron wilton

    Tweet, tweet. Sounds like a certain blogger who is definitely not on CC’s Christmas list, is about to alienate a goodly portion of his audience over this issue.


    1. Laila

      Gee, and I just mentioned him in my most recent post, in a good way, about how the media has all but ignored his stories on Clarks involvement in BC rail : (

      I just heard from a dual reader, Ron and it’s not really surprising. I received similar attention when targeting Falcon during the leadership race and there has been much written that Watts was front runner for leading the Liberals. This issue and others such as the land deals and development conflicts mentioned in the 32nd avenue story all raise valid and strong questions that need answers.


  23. Laila

    Lynn- I removed your comment for obvious reasons( I think) and I agree with everything you have said that you wrote.

    Please email me personally, at or through my contact page. Buddha once said that three things can not be hidden for long: The Sun, The Moon.. and the Truth.


  24. Dave Moody

    I sent this to another blogger who says he has facts, not now but later – it is still being moderated at 1:10 pm over one hour later.
    Dave Moody says: Your comment is awaiting moderation.
    August 15, 2011 at 12:05 PM
    (Mr. Tsakumis):
    I read the LY blog – what I don’t understand is how come Dianne Watts didn’t file a claim back against the Plaintiff – which you are allowed to do?
    Also it would appear that the mayor definitely hit the other drivers car.
    Most people looking at the pictures would believe it.
    It isn’t clear who showed up to the accident scene. Won’t going to examination for discovery be made public as well?

    I intend to ask Mr. Tsakumis some more questions about this. He has yet to publish anything tangible yet. So far your website (LY) has published a lot of information including people’s names with some serious accusations. Has anyone associated with Dianne Watts sent to a letter asking for a retraction? Apparently they have only a couple of weeks to demand a retraction or that you take down the information, or as I understand it, then it is considered to be factual.


  25. From Alex Tsakumis website on Dianne Watts MVA and Civil Action against her.

    Dave Moody says: Your comment is awaiting moderation.
    August 15, 2011 at 12:05 PM
    This was sent to AT at 12:05 PM and is still up for moderation.
    (Alex Tsakumis)
    I read the LY blog – what I don’t understand is how come Dianne Watts didn’t file a claim back against the Plaintiff – which you are allowed to do?
    Also it would appear that the mayor definitely hit the other drivers car.
    Most people looking at the pictures would believe it.
    It isn’t clear who showed up to the accident scene. Won’t going to examination for discovery be made public as well?


    1. Laila

      HI Dave, with all do respect to the parties involved, anyone who reads the initial story, the comments and the followup can clearly see that I have questions not only about this accident, but how it came to be that this error in reporting could have gone on for a year. Jim came into some information that caused me to re-examine what happened that night based on the inconsistencies in the reporting of the facts.

      I have posted numerous articles showing the various versions of the events that night as reported by numerous media outlets, the statement of claim and defence, photos from the accident site and examined some questions this still remain unanswered. I have not made any allegations, what I have done is asked the following questions:

      1) It was reported many times, over and over, that Redekopp hit the mayor. In fact, the mayor hit Redekopp, that is not an allegation, that is fact.
      Question: The media reported what was told to them by the mayors representatives, and what the various RCMP spokespeople told them – where did the information come from that said Redekopp hit the mayor? Who told the media that Redekopp hit the mayors car when it was only RCMP and the mayors people talking to the press? Even Redekopps husband came forward to try and correct the story, which I posted.

      2) Why, if the media reported the incorrect version of the events, wouldn’t the mayors people or the RCMP not contact those media outlets to correct that incorrect version of events?

      3) Even in the most recent reports after the horse accident, again several media outlets published and aired the incorrect statement that the mayors car was broadsided, which led to numerous phone calls to several different press outlets, and some pointed questions to some reporters who also questioned the conflicting information given out at the time around the accident.

      The Province printed a correction, The Sun did nothing, CBC aired and printed a correction after I involved the Ombudsman.

      Question: The CBC reporter interviewed Watts at length, and again somehow came up with the story that Watts was the one broadsided. How did this happen, and when the mayor saw the clip was incorrect, why was it not corrected? Yes I understand she is hurt and resting etc, but I am sure her staff could have made the request. Because there is a lawsuit, that detail is important.

      While all this may seem petty or blithe, or politically motivated to certain other writers, it remains a curiosity to me to have so many inconsistencies of certain details, and where the erroneous information stemmed from.

      For example, going back to the intitial reports, and again, recent ones, it was reported that a) the mayor and her husband were coming from a ” work-related event” , ” a civic event” , ” a civic event at a private home” – as reported by city of Surrey communcations people talking to the press.

      However, when Don Pitcairn submitted a freedom of information request to the city for details relating to this reported civic, work related event – as was again reported in the Surrey Now this week- city staff said the there was no civic event sheduled for that date and as such, no details where forthcoming. I have seen that document personally.

      Now let me be clear. I have never met nor have I any social friendships with either Jim Van Rassel or Don Pitcairn, nor do I know them in any other setting other than examining what has been brought forward that led to questioning these inconsistencies in reporting and how this all happened.

      Tsakumis continues on with hospital reports, first responder reports etc, which have no bearing on any of these questions I have asked, nor do they have any bearing on why none of it was corrected, nor do they speak to why it was reported she was at a work related civic event when city staff say none was scheduled and so had nothing to show on an FOI. And certainly, when the RCMP stated for months that an investigation was ongoing, the inital responders reports, ambulance reports will not speak to the circumstances of the accident itself.

      As far as eyewitnesses to the crash, RCMP publically stated that there were no eyewitnesses to the crash and asked witnesses to come forward if they had seen anything. I will be checking with RCMP myself on some new information that has come forward, to confirm with them if it factual and accurate before I present it.

      Some people like to confuse questions, with conspiracy, when in fact the two are very different.

      I can only surmise that because my questions concern Dianne Watts,whom he believes would make a good premier, rather than his longtime target, one Christy Clark that makes this different
      FYI, I received the same brand of nasty when I wrote the Falcons Follies stories.

      Anyone can go back on my site and read every story I have done on the city of Surrey, and Watts, and see that each and everyone is based on factual and substantiated criticisms, rather than some envy driven jealously- I actually live here and have for years, and am happy to show anyone who asks exactly what I am talking about.


  26. Beth

    Having just read your first post on this,and this, I am wondering what Tsakumis is thinking? He is dead wrong on several points about your story and what you wrote,and it’s beyond me where he is coming from with his really crude manners. He sure didn’t read what I just read! I wonder why the city said early on that it was a work related event when the FOI says not?


  27. Glen P. Robbins says:
    Your comment is awaiting moderation.

    August 16, 2011 at 9:07 AM
    Mr. Tsakumis:

    You might want to ask the mayor about my ROBBINS polls. Dianne Watts PAID me to produce the poll which led to downfall of Surrey mayor Doug McCallum. We met twice in Surrey in relation to the poll through a mutual friend who has been a reporter for nearly twenty years. I have produced polls for many people in politics. In fairness to her, she wanted the truth. So she got it. The poll revealed that she was close to Doug McCallum. The poll was published in Surrey newspapers. I elected to not have anything to do with the news in 2003. Dianne won the election for mayor handily.

    So, Watts is mayor in part because of a poll produced and published as ROBBINS. FACT. FACT #2 – Dianne and I saw each other with Van Rassel at Stephen Harper’s barbecue at Gerry St. Germaines ranch in Surrey. I really like her. Van Rassel told me he really liked her. I still really like her. Her background is Croatian like my wife which made for some interesting conversation. Dianne Watts is smart, has a great personality, and in opinion is a very attractive woman and the best politician in the province.

    (It is helpful that at 6’5″ and 240 lbs Mr. Van Rassel is physically powerful and thus comfortable to be with in public).

    Mr. Van Rassel is a friend of mine. I know him to be an honest and extremely hard working person. He started the same business he has now when he was 19 years of age. He writes as he pleases – and there is no human power that can deter him acting as he likes, including me. We did attend to the Vision Vancouver contest. My public opinion polling company correctly polled each of the candidates within basis points. That’s correct – the Tea Leaves were read at home to the precision of within 1% – for a nomination. As far as we can track that has never been achieved anywhere in North America. I represented our company in a national radio show 3 months prior to Stephen Harper’s election win in 2006 predicting his majority government. We polled Barack Obama 4 points ahead of Hillary Clinton in Jan/Feb 2008 nearly a year prior to the U.S. presidential election – when Gallup, Rasmussen and others had Ms. Clinton 12 points ahead. Perhaps you should give some credit where it is due since you have so easily introduced the slag.

    Considering that we do know the press has retracted their version of the Watts Redekopp accident in at least two instances –

    Thanks for the opening– and by the way the references to seeing Dianne Watts in drinking circumstances is not going to make her lawyer very happy.


  28. North Van's Grumps

    Alex, at this point in time, has had 13 comments on his blog, six are replies to his “readers”.

    I could go to Alex’s blog and leave this comment there, but I don’t want to be subjected to verbal abuse from him, and his “readers”.

    Interesting title, a suggestion that we should compare Watts to a JFK, and his assassination from a Grassy Knoll. I’ve used the same “Grassy Knoll” theory on my blog, in reference to the Main Stream Press recording a private conversation between the Chief of Police for West Vancouver and one of his officers who was being disciplined for an off duty altercation in downtown Vancouver ….. Kash Heed was the Chief of Police, then.

    If you have read Alex’s blog this morning, there are some questions I have for him on his writings…… and I expect that Alex will read this here too, because its obvious that he generated his Post late last night, from this blog, partially.

    Have your hard copy of Alex’s FACT list handy:

    1) fact, despite an ongoing investigation by the RCMP, it remained, from the RCMP, an open investigation ( he said/she said) until the ticket was issued.There were media reports RCMP stated no witnesses to the crash, and asking for any to come forward. If Alex has other eyewitnesses who can attest otherwise, please provide such.

    2)Laila has covered live, many incidents of crime in her neighbourhoods- shootings, stabbings, muggings, which are backed up by photos and police reports. CBC did a story with her on the degradation of Newton, to which the Mayor responded with a beautification plan and a contest to redesign the Newton town centre. Documented on the CBC and on her site. No yarns or lies. Read the Surrey papers latest that street muggings are up in Surrey to a point they warned people recently about it. RCMP must be making that up too.

    3) Did he read Laila’s post? She did point out all the allegations in the statement of claim, not once, but a couple times. Laila also wrote clearly that the fact Richmond court services could not locate the ticket, and it didn’t show up in JUSTIN, was because it may not have been disputed. She confirmed this again in the comments section. Read the post Alex.

    4) Yuile didn’t question why skid marks weren’t there, she pointed out that would be part of the investigation to another commenter who mentioned it. Don’t confuse her words with the words of others. Read the post.

    5) It was addressed in the comments section that a black box was in the vehicle. Does that tell the RCMP who had the red light? Read the post.

    6) Laila has not concentrated on the Jim Van Rassell information, but you can see she starts off her post with stating his information prompted him to look at the accident closer, where she then goes into all the incorrect reports from the media and questions where that information came from.

    7) Again, Laila did point out that the ticket may not have been disputed ( but there are other reasons a ticket would not show online or in the court services in Richmond where such tickets are disputed). She also states and reminds commenters several times that the RCMP ruled in Watts favour, but again questions who told the reporters the incorrect version.

    8. Laila also just pointed out that FOI request that conflicts with the city rep’s statement of Watts having attended a civic event that evening that was reported over and over again. But you never answered any of her questions about where the wrong information came from and you missed the point of where she went with it all.

    9) Laila focused on the media, and where that wrong information came from, and how the RCMP determined so early who had the green light,because in their words to reporters, the investigation was ongoing for months until the ticket was issued.


    1. Laila

      Thank you. NVG, for pointing out where some have it wrong, unintentionally I am sure. No one could read what I actually have written and get it so wrong – he has mentioned on his blog he has been pushing it for far too long. Poor guy, must be exhausted trying to expose Christy !

      Glen, no need to post your comments held in moderation at Tsakumis’s site here, he lets them out usually when he is back at his site. Unless of course he refuses to post it after you see others posting them!! I don’t moderate and let some people comment and not others, but the spam catcher will hold comments with foul language or explicit content, or from an IP address that has been blacklisted as a spammer, or had a complaint issued!

      Beth, thank you for the kind words and no worries.For me, this has never been so much about Watts as it how and why incorrect information that was reported for so long, was left uncorrected and how that information was gleaned in the first place. Those questions still remain,as well as new ones that have surfaced relating to the conflicting statements on whether or not she had attended a work-related civic event or not that evening. The FOI goes against what was reported by and to the media as well. God knows one should not have to dissect a story in the paper statement by statement to see what is true or not.


  29. island papa

    Alex is getting pretty creepy…3500+ words to say I LOVE YOU but I HATE YOU.
    Wonder if he suffers from Seasonal Affective Disorder but instead of lack of sunshine, its lack of grey gloomy clouds and rain.


  30. terrence

    I agree with you island papa – AGT is pretty creepy in his LOVE/HATE diatribe. I am sure that a very high percentage of his 3500+ words are name callings.

    I am very disappointed in him; he has written some good stuff. however, in that incredible, out-of-proportion, over wrought rant, AGT did mention depression (moods, at least) in his past as well as minor alcohol abuse, as well. I hope both are well in his past, and will remain there.

    I am still shaking my head about his 3500+ diatribe. As pointed out above, it looks like AGT did NOT read Laila’s post on Watts.

    Keep it up, Laila. And please do NOT take AGT’s diatribe seriously.


  31. Poor guy, must be exhausted trying to expose Christy !

    I do believe the poor gentlemen may indeed be suffering from exhaustion. I posted a mild rebuttal to a part of one of his posts, and lo and behold I received a very kind email from Mr. Tsakumis:

    1. Alleging defamation
    2. Threatening my presumed employment
    3. Threatening future legal action should I ever “damage” his reputation again.

    Only a very tired and worn out individual would fall victim to such thoughts.


  32. SB

    A couple of points – it is entirely possible Watts vehicle t-boned the other while driving through a green it would be about where cars were not what color a light was , usually ICBC will determine who is guilty and they like to find fault all over to recover costs and id expect when its all over they will do so here , that and just to add would we be so inclined to read as much about a traffic accident if it wasnt a Mayor involved just my 2 pennies Laila i dont live on the mainland so dont much attention to local politicos there .


    1. Laila

      HI SB, what makes this news is that she is the mayor,she is being sued over a controversial accident – the accident alone was controversial from the get go and even made the top 10 news stories of the year for the Surrey Now -toss in a lawsuit with allegations that conflict with ICBC and the RCMP’s ruling and that makes quite the story. I’m pretty sure if it were Gregor Robertson, the papers and other Vancouver bloggers would have been all over it like white on rice, however since it is Ms.Watts we must all turn our head and say nothing? Here is the excerpt from that link:


      Surrey Mayor Dianne Watts was injured in a car accident on April 23 when another driver ran a red light at 128th Street and 24th Avenue.

      Watts and husband, Brian, were returning home from a civic event around 11 p.m. when the collision occurred. Both were taken to hospital and later released. Watts suffered a cracked rib and internal injuries, while her husband was shaken up.

      Shawnene Redekopp, 55 at the time of the incident, was driving the other vehicle and suffered more serious injuries. She was taken to Vancouver General Hospital, where surgeons removed her damaged spleen and treated her for a swollen pancreas, broken ribs, a broken collarbone and fluid in her lungs, her husband, Les, told the Now.

      Police said Watts was driving the couple’s Cadillac SUV eastbound on 24th Avenue when it collided with Redekopp’s sedan after it entered the intersection on a red light. Redekopp was driving north on 128th Street. Her car wound up on the sidewalk in front of Crescent Park Elementary school.

      Les Redekopp questioned how police could be so sure about who was at fault so quickly after the crash. He contended that, since his wife was hit broadside by Watts’ car, it was more likely the mayor ran the light.

      The police determined it was Redekopp who failed to stop. – Ted Colley ”

      Certainly, it will be very interesting to see what comes out in the lawsuit, or whether it gets settled with a non-disclosure agreement as many times contentious lawsuits do. Certainly by far, the bigger story are the vast and continuing erroneous media reports, that still exist and why they were never corrected.

      A question that was raised by a reader strikes a chord – because it was reported to the press that she was returning home from a civic, ” work-related”, if there was a payout in this suit, would taxpayers be on the hook since she was returning from a civic event? I really don’t know, but since the FOI from city hall staff contradicts what the city rep told the press, I think that is a mute point. The FOI revealed there were no civic events scheduled for that evening.

      Would you not find it interesting if it were your own mayor?

      To the rest… bless you.Island Papa, you’ve clearly a future in stand-up, in particular with your low pressure fire hose analogy ; )


  33. SB

    I respond to accidents in my community and do see a lot and i will say for the most part RCMP are pretty down to business about accidents ive seen high profile folks and they do not treat them any different than any of the rest of us at least here anyways so was just adding soem personal experience Laila , i know msm can be anything but honest i dont read them hence know little about whats happened .
    and i may look twice at a local politician if the issue was worthy but we dont have a mayor i live in an unorganized region and quite like it that way .


  34. Rajinder

    Hey Laila,back home from Maui and going through my local news here in Toronto,and guess what I found?Recognized the name, your mayor right!.FYI.Got to go catch up on your posts now.
    A lawsuit against Surrey Mayor Dianne Watts is going to court next year.

    Shawnene Redekopp is suing the mayor after the two were involved in a car crash.

    In April 2010, Watts and her husband were heading home from a work event when their SUV collided with Redekopp’s vehicle at 128th Street and 24th Avenue.

    All three were taken to hospital.

    Police at the time said alcohol was not a factor.

    There have been conflicting reports on who had the green light and who t-boned who.

    Redekopp is suing the mayor for driving without due care, among other allegations — which have not been proven in court.

    The matter is set to go to trial in October 2013.


Comments are closed.