Alberta RCMP constable charged with sexual assault after suspect ‘coerced’ to expose breasts
An RCMP constable is facing charges of sexual assault and breach of trust after two women complained he asked to see their breasts, court documents show.
The documents allege that on July 1, 2016, the officer “did commit a sexual assault on a person under detention and in custody at the Red Deer RCMP Detachment, by coercing her to expose her breasts.” He is also charged with criminal breach of trust for that incident and for another, unrelated event two months earlier, when he is alleged to have asked “a complainant and material witness to expose her breasts to him during the course of an investigation.”
Executive Director Susan Hughson said Thursday the Alberta Serious Incident Response Team was called in in July 2016 after one of the women complained to the RCMP.
During its investigation, ASIRT became aware of two other, unrelated incidents.
“With respect to two of the incidents, he was posted at the Red Deer RCMP detachment,” Hughson said. “The third incident, he was at a rural detachment.”
In that 2012 case, which took place near Faust, Alta., the officer faces a charge of sexual assault.
Hughson said it took great courage for the women to come forward.
“Sexual assaults are difficult enough for people who have been sexual assaulted. It would seem reasonable that it’s only more difficult for those women… or victims when the perpetrator is a police officer.
“When the incidents take place during the execution of the duties, that makes it extremely serious.”
Watch below: An eight-year member of the RCMP has been charged with two counts of sexual assault and two counts of breach of trust in relation to three separate incidents dating back to 2012. Sarah Kraus has the details.
RCMP Chief Supt. George Stephenson said the constable, an eight-year member of the RCMP, was suspended with pay in August 2016.
“He will remain off duty until the internal process and all criminal charges against him have been resolved,” he said.
“These charges are very serious. First of all, the fact that he’s suspended acknowledges the RCMP’s concern about the serious nature of these offences.”
Stephenson would not say what role the constable played with the RCMP.
Watch below: ASIRT announces charges laid against Alberta RCMP constable
Jason Andrew Tress, 30, is charged with two counts each of sexual assault and criminal breach of trust.
He is scheduled to appear in Red Deer Provincial Court on April 12, 2017.
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