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A 52-year-old female RCMP staff sergeant in Ottawa filed a lawsuit against 13 members of the RCMP and is seeking millions of dollars in damages. The woman alleges that these colleagues of sexual assault that occurred in the 1980s when she was working as a constable.
The woman’s statement of claim says that she was working for the RCMP Musical Ride, and it was during the course of her employment there that she was the victim of a hazing ritual. She says that she was subjected to the ritual due to her gender. She also alleges that she reported the treatment and was then harassed by the individuals who conducted the ritual. Additionally, the woman alleges that she was shown a sexually offensive video in which one individual simulated a sex act with her while she was asleep on a bus in Alberta. Official records indicate that the woman was the recipient of over 100 substantiated incidences of harassment, making her case the largest internal investigation of the RCMP in history in Ottawa.
The woman says that the RCMP took no real action even though she reported the behavior. She was diagnosed with post-traumatic stress disorder and she alleges that her marriage was affected because of the actions of the defendants. The woman is seeking over $8 million in damages. She has also listed her ex-husband and two children as plaintiffs for an additional request of damages of $300,000. There are no criminal charges pending regarding the matter as the statute of limitations has run on the alleged offences.
Toronto criminal defence lawyers may assist individuals who are charged with sexual assault or other sex-related crimes. They may be able to raise affirmative defences such as the running of a statute of limitations or a constitutional argument against evidence that was seized.
Source: CBC news, “Mountie sues 13 ex-colleagues for sexual, harassment”, CBC news, May 21, 2013