Halifax police officer charged with voyeurism, trespassing at night
Const. George Farmer charged with one count each of voyeurism, trespassing at night and breach of trust
A Halifax Regional Police officer has been charged with voyeurism, trespassing at night and breach of trust.
Const. George Farmer was arrested today and released with conditions, according to a police news release.
The alleged incidents happened while the officer was on duty between Nov. 23 and Dec. 3 in the 700 block of the Bedford Highway, police said.
Police said they believe the privacy of multiple victims was "compromised."
Voyeurism involves surreptitiously watching or recording for a sexual purpose someone who is nude, exposing intimate areas, or engaged in explicit sexual activity in a situation where they would expect privacy.
Trespassing at night involves loitering or prowling near a "dwelling-house" on another person's property at night.
Breach of trust involves a public officer using their position for a purpose other than public good.
"Any time a police officer is charged with a criminal offence it is disconcerting, not just for our employees, but also the citizens and communities we serve," said Halifax Regional Police chief Jean-Michel Blais in a statement.
"We recognize that matters of this nature undermine public trust, which our employees work hard to build and uphold every day. Breaching that trust is unacceptable and comes with consequences."
Police made aware in July
The force first received an internal complaint about Farmer in July, according to Supt. Jim Perrin.
"It came from an employee of the police department. An initial probe was started and evolved into a criminal investigation," Perrin said.
Farmer was working as a patrol officer at the time, Perrin said.
Perrin would not discuss whether or not Farmer had been internally investigated before.
No other officers were being investigated in relation to this case, he said.
"This is not a good day for our police department," he said.
Suspended with pay
Farmer, who has worked with the police force for 11 years, has been suspended with pay, which is required under the Nova Scotia Police Act.
City documents show Farmer made $101,647 in salary and other benefits in the fiscal year ending in March 2016.
Farmer is scheduled to appear in Halifax provincial court on Jan. 16.