PEI

Not guilty decision in webcam sex assault case

Dwayne Arthur Hawkes was acquitted in Summerside provincial court Wednesday morning of charges he sexually assaulted a woman in front of a webcam.

Dwayne Arthur Hawkes was acquitted in Summerside provincial court Wednesday morning of charges he sexually assaulted a woman in front of a webcam.

In his decision Judge Jeff Lantz noted police found no evidence on Hawkes's computer that a sexual assault had taken place. Medical evidence from two separate doctors exams, one that took place months after the alleged incidents, were inconclusive.

"The Crown's case cannot be classified as powerful," said Lantz.

In his written decision Lantz said the testimony of both the accused and his accuser raised credibility concerns for him. He said the accuser's testimony was at times contradictory, and Hawkes was not entirely honest in his testimony about his alcohol use.

"In the end, I don't know who to believe and who not to believe," said Lantz.

"The Crown has failed to prove its case beyond a reasonable doubt. The accused is acquitted of all charges."

Outside court Hawkes said the decision was "a huge relief."

"I lost my job over this," he said, "but I can walk with my head held high."

Hawkes was facing three charges: sexual assault with a weapon causing bodily harm, common assault, and sexual assault.

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