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Victim of mistaken identity speaks about his painful experience

Myles Himmelreich.
Myles Himmelreich. Global News

A man who was arrested by Calgary police in a sex assault investigation and then later cleared, is talking about his ordeal, hoping it doesn’t happen to someone else.

Police released Myles Himmelreich’s photo in October in connection with a sexual assault last May at a business in the city’s northwest.

Himmelreich, who is a motivational speaker and a consultant for the Alberta government on living with fetal alcohol syndrome, was involved in a presentation on Vancouver Island at the time.

When a friend texted Himmelreich that he was wanted for questioning in connection with the attack, he contacted police and arranged a meeting with a detective back in Calgary.

Before that meeting could take place, police officers came to the gym where he was playing volleyball with his friends and took him into custody.

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“I felt ashamed, I felt scared,” says Himmelreich. “I just felt like it wasn’t fair, like I was being judged for something I didn’t do.”

Police acknowledge there was a communication error and that the arrest didn’t have to happen.

But they tell Global News that even though Himmelreich didn’t match the victim’s description of her attacker, releasing his photo was no mistake.

“This was a serious sexual assault,” says Kevin Brookwell of CPS. “He was in the area at the time in, close proximity. We did need to talk to him more in terms of what he may have heard or seen.”

Himmelreich’s lawyer believes police victimized her client. She was present when he was interviewed by an officer and was impressed by how Himmelreich handled the situation.

”He was already looking at, you know, what can I do to help the next person that’s in this situation?” says Shelley Moore.

“That’s what’s so amazing to me. It’s still amazing to me; I get goosebumps thinking about it.”

Himmelreich is hoping something positive comes out of his ordeal; he has invited police to hear him speak and learn about living with fetal alchohol syndrome.

Police have promised to take him up on his offer.

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