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Home --> Rumors of War --> Maple Leave

Maple Leave

Claim:   A Canadian policeman was suspended after traveling to New York to help search for survivors of the terrorist attacks on the World Trade Center.

Status:   True.

Origins:   Jamie Maple leaf Symington's experiences in recent weeks may have demonstrated the truth of the maxim that "no good deed goes unpunished."

Symington, a 35-year-old officer with the Halifax, Nova Scotia, regional police service, drove to New York with a retired police dog named Trakr on September 11 after viewing horrible scenes of the terrorist attack on the World Trade Center on television. He and Trakr assisted with search-and-rescue efforts at the WTC site in New York, where Symington claimed to have helped locate one survivor. (The head of the New York City Police, however, has maintained that only five people were found alive in the rubble, none of them through the use of a dog.)

One small problem: Symington, a 13-year veteran of the force, has been on medical leave since June with an elbow problem (and has also reported problems with job-related stress). He was spotted on television aiding rescue efforts in New York, and when he returned to Halifax, he was suspended from his position.

Last updated:   8 March 2008

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  Sources Sources:
    Cohen, Tom.   "Canadian Policeman on Medical Leave Suspended."
    Associated Press.   3 October 2001.

    Lambie, Chris.   "N.Y. Cop: Dogs Didn't Find Any Survivors."
    The [Halifax] Daily News.   4 October 2001.