THUNDER BAY – NEWS – A former Ontario Provincial Police Officer is facing charges. The Director of the Special Investigations Unit (SIU), Tony Loparco, has reasonable grounds to believe that a former Ontario Provincial Police (OPP) officer committed a criminal offence against a woman in 1986, while the officer was still a member of the police service in Thunder Bay.
Director Loparco has caused a charge to be laid against the former officer.
The SIU was contacted by the OPP regarding a complaint of a sexual nature against the former officer, which was alleged to have taken place on April 23, 1986.
As a result of the SIU investigation, former OPP Constable Joseph Girard is facing one charge of Sexual Assault, contrary to s. 246.1 (as it then stood) of the Criminal Code of Canada.
Mr. Girard is compelled to appear before the Ontario Court of Justice at 125 Brodie Street North in Thunder Bay on January 20, 2015. The Justice Prosecutions branch of the Ministry of the Attorney General will have carriage of the prosecution.
As this matter is now before the courts, and in consideration of the fair trial interests of the charged officer and the community, the SIU will make no further comment pertaining to this investigation.
The SIU is an arm’s length agency that investigates reports involving police where there has been death, serious injury or allegations of sexual assault. Under the Police Services Act, the Director of the SIU must
- consider whether an officer has committed a criminal offence in connection with the incident under investigation
- depending on the evidence, lay a criminal charge against the officer if appropriate or close the file without any charges being laid
- report the results of any investigations to the Attorney General.