WATCH ABOVE: 3 Toronto Police Officers charged in wake of sexual assault allegations. Sean Mallen reports.
TORONTO – Toronto police have charged three of its own with sexual assault involving a female parking enforcement officer.
A statement released by the police force said the officers were off-duty at the time of the alleged assault, which took place at an after-work party on Saturday, Jan. 15.
The accused have been identified as 28-year-old Joshua Cabero, 38-year-old Leslie Nyznik, and 31-year-old Sameer Kara, all from 51 Division.
All three have been charged with sexual assault and gang sexual assault.
Toronto Police Association president Mike McCormack wouldn’t speak about specifics of the case, saying it would be inappropriate as it’s currently before the courts.
He did however express concern about the seriousness of the accusations.
“We’re very concerned about the nature of these charges,” he said. “These are very serious charges.”
The three were suspended with pay during the investigation. Members of the Toronto Police Association can apply for legal assistance from the union. McCormack declined to say whether any of the accused had applied or are receiving legal aid.
Toronto Police Chief Bill Blair wouldn’t comment on the investigation either, except to say the allegations are “a matter of very significant concern” to the Toronto Police Service.
“The investigation needed to be conducted, it was conducted and those charges are laid and the matter is now before the courts,” he said.
He refused to say whether the investigation was ongoing.
Cabero has been with the force for four years, Nyznik for five years and Kara for six.
Nyznik was also present at a 2010 incident where police officers were accused of using excessive force during the arrest of an allegedly impaired driver. Footage from a dashboard camera inside the police car captured Const. Christian Dobbs, who was Nyznik’s partner at the time, striking the driver repeatedly with his elbow during the arrest.
No officers were charged in the incident and Justice Ford Clements said in his ruling “there was a contrived effort to justify the use of force.”
The three accused appeared in court Thursday morning.