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Officer who joined 'Freedom Convoy' in Coutts, Alta., allowed back with Edmonton police

Const. Elena Golysheva of the Edmonton Police Service in a video posted to social media. (Source: Facebook) Const. Elena Golysheva of the Edmonton Police Service in a video posted to social media. (Source: Facebook)

An officer who participated in a "Freedom Convoy" rally, thanked protesters and posted a video suggesting vaccine mandates were "unlawful" and "unsafe" will keep her job after all.

A disciplinary hearing for Edmonton Police Service Const. Elena Golysheva wrapped up on Wednesday, more than a year after she was first "relieved of duty without pay."

Instead of being fired, she will now return to "active duty following her involvement in a reintegration program," an EPS spokesperson confirmed to CTV News Edmonton Thursday.

The video of a tearful and uniformed Golysheva first surfaced on Facebook and Instagram in February 2022.

It was shared thousands of times by people upset about vaccine mandates and COVID-19 public health restrictions.

"The very freedom that I moved to Canada for has been taken away, and Canadians who live here, were born here, are not recognizing that," Golysheva said in the video, referring to pandemic restrictions.

She warned she would not follow "unlawful orders" because she's for "freedom of choice."

Later that month, Golysheva and fellow EPS officer Staff Sgt. Rick Abbott spoke at a COVID-19 vaccine mandate protest in southern Alberta.

"I'm here because you have given me so much strength," Golysheva told a crowd in Coutts, Alta.

Both Golysheva and Abbott were placed on "administrative leave" following that rally. The service later confirmed that Abbott decided to retire.

"Const. Golysheva was relieved from duty without pay in March 2022 until January 2023, when she was relieved from duty with pay," Cheryl Voordenhout with EPS confirmed.

Voordenhout did not say why Golysheva's pay was reinstated or why she'll be welcomed back with EPS but that a timeline for her return has not yet been finalized.

When asked in 2022 about two of his officers participating in Coutts, police chief Dale McFee said, "that's not something we support or condone. Like, that's just not something that's allowed." Top Stories

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