Saskatoon police chief orders investigation into outing allegation
SASKATOON -- Saskatoon police Chief Troy Cooper says he has asked for an investigation into an allegation that an officer threatened to out a gay man to his family during an arrest.
"I asked for an investigation to occur because I also need to know what preceded this event and what steps that our officers take before he was taken into custody,” Cooper said Tuesday during a virtual media conference.
Cooper said members of the LGBT community are more likely to be victimized and the police service is taking the issue seriously.
“When they bring us an issue they need to know we’re going to stop and pay attention and that we’re going to adjust and change to make sure that they're served. And I think we have that relationship. We want to make sure that if we don't that we build it."
Cooper said police will meet with Out Saskatoon later this week.
Out Saskatoon said in a Facebook post: "In essence, a police officer using their power over a 2slgbtq+ person and threatening to out them is gender-based violence."
Crown prosecutor Ainsley Furlonger said last fall police were called to a local hotel for a reported home invasion.
It was later learned a woman called 911 after walking into a room and "freaking out" over seeing the accused engaged in sexual activity with another man and reported it as a home invasion.
Furlonger said the accused man was initially cooperative with police but was intoxicated, became belligerent and was arrested.
At one point an officer said something that stood out.
"I don't remember exactly what it was. It was something to the effect of 'ok or yeah sure let's call your mom' or something like that," Furlonger said in an interview with CTV.
The comment could have been interpreted as a threat to out the man to his family, she said.
"One of many factors that we considered in reaching the sentence is how somebody might interpret that. And we knew from defence how this person felt about it.”
The man pleaded guilty for assaulting a police officer and received a conditional discharge, she said.