La jeune policière Celia Qhang vit une expérience hors de l’ordinaire en participant de très près à l’enquête sur la disparition de la chinoise Jian Ping Li et de son bébé.
The fact that 28-year-old Celia Qhang, a police officer with the Agglomeration of Longueuil Police Department (ALPD), speaks Mandarin has catapulted her to the frontline of an extensive investigation into the disappearance of Jiang Ping Li, 42, and her 6-month old baby on April 30, 2014.
Shortly after the disappearance, detectives at the ALPD asked Celia Qhang to speak with witnesses and to the family and friends of Jian Ping Li. This meant not only speaking with Brossard residents but also contacting people living in China and the United States who only spoke Mandarin.
“My parents came to Quebec 30 years ago and only spoke Mandarin, which I learned at home,” explains Celia who was born in Montreal.
The young officer was educated in French schools. After her graduation from the police academy, the ALPD hired her in September 2008. Being the only officer fluent in Mandarin, detectives working the case immediately sought her out for help.
“During the last year, she has been immersed in the investigative world like no other police officer. She was also present during the interrogations to interpret the testimony of important witnesses and to help detectives take their statements,” explains ALPD spokesperson Ghislain Vallières.
For 6 months, officer Qhang was working the case full-time. The weeks were tough on the officer who had no choice but to concentrate non-stop on the Chinese witnesses.
“It was indeed quite trying. I could only handle two interrogations per day because it was very exhausting,” says Celia Qhang, who is disappointed that the case remains unsolved despite the three command posts and 200 pieces of information collected.
“In most disappearance cases, it’s long. Success doesn’t always come quickly.”
A YouTube Star
Celia Qhang recorded a video that was posted on YouTube by the ALPD in order to maximize contact with the Asian community of Brossard.
She speaks directly to the Chinese population in Mandarin, asking those with information to contact the police. With this visibility, the community has begun to recognize her.
“The video made quite the impact of course,” states the officer who is often recognized in the streets since the video was posted.
“We will work this way again in future cases,” confirms Ghislain Vallières. “In addition to quickly and efficiently reaching the Asian community, we have built relationships as police officers that will last.”