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Ottawa police lay 3 more sex assault charges against St. Pat’s teacher

Ottawa police have laid three more sexual assault charges against a 55-year-old teacher who used to work at St. Patrick's High School in Alta Vista.
Ottawa police have laid three more sexual assault charges against a 55-year-old teacher who used to work at St. Patrick's High School in Alta Vista. Google Street View

Ottawa police have laid three more sexual assault charges against a 55-year-old teacher who used to work at St. Patrick’s High School in Alta Vista.

Robert Lavergne was previously charged mid-March with sexual assault and sexual exploitation of a young girl under 18 years of age.

Lavergne, who has been suspended from his teaching duties since February, is not in custody at the moment, a spokesperson for the Ottawa Police Service confirmed Thursday.

He is scheduled to appear in court on the new charges on June 27.

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The first set of charges against Lavergne came after a police investigation “into sexual offences” that occurred at the local Catholic school between 2014 and 2016. Police said the three additional charges stem from “further reports of sexual assault” which allegedly occurred between 2004 and 2010. The new accusations relate to two alleged adult victims.

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In a statement, the Ottawa Catholic School Board’s director of education said the board is “concerned” about the new charges and will continue to cooperate with Ottawa police in their investigation.

“The teacher was suspended when we became aware of the initial charges in winter. A letter was sent home to parents at that time,” Denise Andre said in an email. “The number one priority for our board is the continued safety and well-being of each student.

“School-based counselling and professional wellness resources continue to be available to students, staff, and families.”

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Investigators are also concerned there could be other victims.

Police ask anyone with information to call the Ottawa Police Service Sexual Assault and Child Abuse Unit at 613-236-1222, extension 5944 — or submit tips by email to SACA@ottawapolice.ca

Anonymous tips can also be submitted by calling Crime Stoppers toll-free at 1-800-222-8477(TIPS) or by downloading the Ottawa police app.