Maj. David Yurczyszyn pleads not guilty to sexual assault

Former CFB Wainwright commander Maj. David Yurczyszyn pleaded not guilty to a charge of sex assault, but guilty to drunkenness at a court martial this morning.

Former CFB Wainwright commanding officer faces sexual assault, drunkenness charges

Former CFB Wainwright CO Maj. David Yurczyszyn has been demoted and added to the national sex offender registry after a sexual assault conviction. (Wainwright Star News)

Former CFB Wainwright commander Maj. David Yurczyszyn pleaded not guilty to a charge of sex assault, but guilty to drunkenness at a court martial this morning. 

Yurczysyn was removed from duty almost a year ago after he was charged following an incident at a party on the base on Remembrance Day, 2012. 

The Canadian Forces National Investigation Service alleges Yurczysyn grabbed someone's chest.

While the sexual assault charge was laid under the Criminal Code, the drunkenness and disgraceful conduct charges fall under the National Defence Act.

The trial is being held at Wainwright Garrison, but is open to the public. 

The court martial was told Yurczyszyn was wearing his uniform and slurring his speech. One woman testified that he touched her breast.

Another woman said that Yurczyszyn ended up taking him away from the party because "he was making an ass out of himself in front of junior officers."

Yurczyszyn joined the Canadian Forces in 1995, and spent much of his career stationed at CFB Petawawa northwest of Ottawa. He was deployed to Afghanistan twice and to Bosnia once.

Yurczyszyn faced a court martial in 2002 after being accused of conspiring to secretly videotape a woman having sex.

Although his charges were dismissed due to lack of evidence, the Canadian Forces judge suggested Yurczyszyn may not have been blameless.

Yurczyszyn was appointed commanding officer at CFB Wainwright in June 2012. He was transferred to Defence headquarters 

CFB Wainwright is located about 200 kilometres southeast of Edmonton.

With files from the CBC's Briar Stewart