Commissioner's statement on OPP sexual assault investigations

Feb 8, 2017

ORILLIA, ON, Feb. 8, 2017 /CNW/ - Ontario Provincial Police (OPP) Commissioner, J.V.N. (Vince) HAWKES is releasing the following statement regarding sexual assault investigations conducted by the OPP:

"The OPP takes all reports of sexual assault and violence very seriously and uses all resources necessary to conduct complete, thorough and professional investigations.  We have policies and procedures in place, mandatory training for investigators, and layers of supervision and review for these types of investigations.  We are strongly committed to continuously seek improvement in order to earn and maintain public's confidence and trust.

Over the next several weeks, the OPP will review approximately 4,000 sexual assault investigation reports that resulted in a designation as "unfounded" between the years 2010 to 2014. We want to ensure that all reports during that period were properly classified when received; that the incidents were appropriately investigated; and, that the correct classification was used when the investigation was completed.  It will take some time to review and assess these incidents, and, if warranted, we will expand the review. 

If it is determined that any sexual assault report was not properly investigated by the OPP, we will re-open that investigation.

We encourage victims to continue to come forward and report crimes and our officers will continue to offer professional support and referrals to resources within the communities we serve. I want all victims of sexual assault or any crime to have confidence in the OPP and our ability to investigate crimes and bring those responsible to justice.

I will provide another statement at the conclusion of the review which will include a summary of the analysis."

SOURCE Ontario Provincial Police

For further information: Sgt. Peter LEON, Media Relations Coordinator, OPP Corporate Communications, Phone: (705) 329- 6878