Edmonton

Former chief's son charged with assault

An Edmonton police officer, who is an eight-year veteran of the force and the son of a former chief, has been charged with assault for an alleged off-duty incident.

An Edmonton police officer, who is an eight-year veteran of the force and theson of a former chief, has been charged with assault for an alleged off-duty incident.

Const. Mike Wasylyshen, 31, was charged with three counts of assault and two counts of uttering threatsin connection withan incident inDecember 2005, police announced Wednesday.

He is the son of former chief Bob Wasylyshen, whoretired in 2004.

Police would only say the incident allegedly took place in the popular Whyte Avenue area, a strip of bars, restaurants and shops, and that the victim wasn't another officer.

Mike Wasylyshen will remain on duty until his court appearance on Sept. 7.

Police Chief Mike Boyd insisted Wednesday night thatthe decision to keep Wasylyshenon duty has nothing to do with him being the son of a former chief.

"I reject every thought that politics had anything to do [with it]. This is about the police service doing the right thing, about us not being biased in any way because this member is an active police officer."

The officer also made headlines after an incident in 2002. Randy Fryingpan, then 17,complained that he was awoken from a drunken sleep in the back of a car when Wasylyshen allegedly zapped himwith a Taser at leastsix times and knocked out his tooth. The teen alleged that another officer strip-searched him.

In 2005, a provincial court judge stayed a charge of bail breach against Fryingpan, sayingthe police officers involved in the arrest violated the teen's rights under the Charter of Rights and Freedoms.

Judge Jack Easton called the officers' actions "cruel and unusual" treatment.

Later that year, acting police chief Darryl da Costa dismissed the allegations against Wasylyshen and said he wouldn't face any charges because the accusations were unfounded.