OPP officer found guilty of sexually assaulting unconscious woman and filming it
Witnesses say Const. Jason Redmond did it to show the victim 'how easily she could be raped' when drunk
WARNING: This article contains graphic content and may affect those who have experienced sexual violence or know someone affected by it.
A judge has found that Ontario Provincial Police (OPP) Const. Jason Redmond sexually assaulted an unconscious woman while recording it on his mobile phone, and heard from witnesses that Redmond did it to show the victim "how easily she could be raped when she was drunk," and "to teach [her] a lesson."
In a two-day, judge-only trial at a Brockville courthouse last August, Justice Janet O'Brien heard Crown witness testimonies that she recounted when delivering her decision earlier this year, a court transcript obtained by CBC News shows. Redmond was convicted of sexual assault.
The judge read in her ruling that according to one witness, Redmond was "proving a point" to the victim that she had a drinking problem, and "he made the video to show that anybody could rape her."
Redmond was previously convicted of drug trafficking in 2018 but received only one year of probation and no jail time. He has been on paid leave from the OPP since he was charged in that case in 2015.
In Oct. 2021, Redmond was arrested and charged with sexual assault, according to the OPP. In an emailed statement, the OPP said it did not issue a press release informing the public of the charge at the time "in an effort to protect the identity of the victim." Redmond pleaded not guilty.
The final ruling was delivered on Feb. 16, just over five years after the assault happened.
'He thought it was funny'
The court transcript shows that justice O'Brien heard about the assault and the video from five witnesses, including the victim and others in Redmond's inner circle.
CBC News is not naming the victim or the witnesses in this case, as the victim's identity and some of the circumstances surrounding the sexual assault are protected by a publication ban.
According to the court transcript, the judge found that the assault took place in December 2017, after the victim "consumed a large amount of alcohol to the point of extreme intoxication." The court also heard that both the victim and Redmond had used cocaine several times that day.
"[She] lost consciousness either because she went to sleep or as a result of the effects of alcohol, or a combination of these," the judge said.
According to the judge, Redmond told the victim the next day that "he had sexual intercourse with her while she was passed out, that she wasn't aware of it, and that he had recorded it on his phone," and held his phone out to show her.
Justice O'Brien recalled the victim testifying that she was embarrassed she couldn't remember what had happened, so she pushed his hand away, did not watch the video and went about her day as normal.
Shortly after, several people in Redmond's inner circle became aware that the video existed, including those who testified in court.
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Three witnesses, not including the victim, said they learned about the video directly from Redmond, who tried to show it to them. Another witness claimed to have unintentionally found the video.
The judge said she heard from one witness who said when Redmond told them about the video, they "thought at first it was a joke because [he] was kind of laughing."
"He appeared to find what he had done funny and was making fun of [the victim]."
Another witness testified that on a different occasion, Redmond said he was "teaching [the victim] a lesson," and laughed about a member of his inner circle finding and watching the video.
The witness who found the video told the court that when they confronted Redmond about it, he said "he did it to teach [the victim] a lesson about how easily she could be raped when she was drunk."
In his defence, court transcripts show that Redmond said none of the Crown witnesses were credible or reliable, including the victim who was "drinking excessively" at the time of the incident. According to the judge, Redmond also brought up how no video was shown to the court, despite several witnesses testifying to its existence.
OPP seeking dismissal
In an emailed statement, OPP Commissioner Thomas Carrique said the police force has been seeking dismissal of Redmond since his initial conviction of drug trafficking in 2018.
"This behaviour is unacceptable for any police officer and cannot be tolerated," Carrique wrote.
Carrique explained that the OPP's Professional Standards Unit laid charges under the Police Services Act shortly after Redmond's initial conviction.
He was then convicted on the charges, and the adjudicator for the case ordered that Redmond be dismissed from the OPP but denied a request to avoid automatically staying the conviction and penalty if appealed.
The OPP wrote that the dismissal ruling was immediately appealed by Redmond, which has allowed him to continue to collect his salary for the last seven and a half years while being suspended on paid leave.
The appeal is now the subject of a hearing on June 15, before the Ontario Civilian Police Commission.
Redmond's name was included on the 2021 Ontario Sunshine List, which is annually published by the province and publicly discloses the names of all public sector employees who earned $100,000 or more.
According to the list, Redmond made $121,047.96 that year.
According to OPP, Redmond is still before the court "facing 17 additional serious criminal charges including assault, aggravated assault, assault with a weapon and others in connection with multiple victims."
He's set to appear before the court for sentencing in this case on April 14.
The Police Association of Ontario, which is the official provincial representative of 45 police associations across the province, told CBC in an emailed statement that it does not condone criminal conduct of any kind, by anyone.
"This case is disturbing and we're glad to see the individual will be held responsible," a spokesperson wrote.
Support is available for anyone who has been sexually assaulted. You can access crisis lines and local support services through this Government of Canada website or the Ending Violence Association of Canada database. If you're in immediate danger or fear for your safety or that of others around you, please call 911.