The Canadian Forces National Investigation Service is investigating an alleged sexual assault that happened at the CFB Esquimalt on Oct. 5. (BlackPress file photo)

Investigation underway into reported sexual assault at B.C. naval base

An Oct. 5 allegation is being investigated by Canadian Forces National Investigation Service

An Oct. 5 report of sexual assault at CFB Esquimalt on Southern Vancouver Island is currently under investigation by the Canadian Forces National Investigation Service.

Major Jean-Marc Mercier, the public affairs officer to the Provost Marshall of Canadian Military Police, confirmed there is an investigation underway into an allegation of an Oct. 5 incident. He said he could not share any more information about the allegations while the investigation is ongoing.

“Once the investigation is over, if the findings — supported by factual evidence — are that there was a wrongdoing, then the CFNIS will lay charges,” he said.

READ MORE: Victoria plaintiffs part of national lawsuit against Canadian Armed Forces

Details about a reported sexual assault will only be released by the military police to the public if charges are being laid. If there isn’t enough evidence to go to court or a report cannot be proven, information will not be released to maintain privacy.

“We may communicate that the investigation is over and done, but there won’t be any further information as to who were the ones that were allegedly being the bad guys here because they have rights too,” he said.

Alleged victims, he said, may waive their right to privacy, but the military police are bound by law not to.

READ MORE: Court martial underway for retired CAF member accused of sex crimes in Esquimalt

He said the military police could not reveal how many investigations are ongoing at the base level, such as CFB Esquimalt, but that they keep track of that information at a national level.

“There are some bases that are so small that by giving out the number would actually be potentially revealing information on the identity of [victims and perpetrators],” Mercier said. “Maintaining some level of discretion is helpful to the value of the investigation.”

The latest available statistics from the Canadian Armed Forces about military police investigations is from 2016. It shows across the country there were investigations into 175 “level 1” sexual assaults, no “level 2 (weapon or bodily harm)” sexual assault investigations and one “level 3 (aggravated)” sexual assault investigation. In 2016, there were 13 investigations into sexual violations against children.

READ MORE: Former CFB Esquimalt naval officer charged with sexual assault


@KeiliBartlett
keili.bartlett@blackpress.ca

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Just Posted

More B.C. ambulance service needed in the North: Hospital chief of staff

Fort St. James physicians talk about the need for easier access to healthcare

Broken axle caused New Hazelton train derailment: TSB

It could happen again without a different way to inspect trains

Cullen remains uncertain about political future

Says he’ll make decision in early March

Terrace resident’s bill banning single-use plastics introduced in Ottawa

MP Nathan Cullen’s presented Ben Korving’s private member’s bill Wednesday

B.C. BUDGET: Surplus $374 million after bailouts of BC Hydro, ICBC

Growth projected stronger in 2020, Finance Minister Carole James says

Fashion Fridays: Must-have wardrobe basics

Kim XO, helps to keep you looking good on Fashion Fridays on the Black Press Media Network

Guards protest firing of fellow officers charged with assault at B.C. prison

Corrections officers demonstrated in Maple Ridge on Friday afternoon

National Energy Board approves Trans Mountain pipeline again

Next step includes cabinet voting on the controversial expansion

Skier dies at Revelstoke Mountain Resort

Cause of death for young man has not been released

R. Kelly charged with 10 counts of sexual abuse

R&B star has been accused of sexual misconduct involving women and underage girls for years

More sailings coming to 10 BC Ferries’ routes

Transportation Minister Claire Trevena said the sailings were originally cut in 2014

Cryptocurrency exchange CEO who suddenly died leaves Kelowna house in will

Gerald Cotten, holding the keys to money tied up in his virtual currency exchange, died in December.

Regulator’s report, coming today, unlikely to settle Trans Mountain pipeline battle

The Trans Mountain pipeline will remain a controversial topic both in the political ring and out

Australian woman killed in avalanche at Whistler

The woman and her partner were reportedly rescued by ski patrol, but she did not survive

Most Read