Monday December 27, 1994

Bob Brent

p. A28.

Woman sues police over 'intimidation'

Police offered her deal for sex, she says

Metro police and Chief William McCormack are being sued by a North York woman who says she was subjected to "intimidation tactics" after she accused a constable of offering to protect her in exchange for sex.

The woman, identified as Mrs. F. already has filed a $600,000 suit against police complaints commissioner Clare Lewis.

Now she's targeted McCormack, retired deputy chief Peter Scott and two internal affairs investigators who were assigned to probe the woman's background in 1991 after Lewis called a board of inquiry to hear her allegations.

Each face a claim of $200,000 for breach of trust and abuse of power and damages of $150,000. The 35-year-old woman is representing herself in court.

In November, Deputy Chief Jean Boyd told the police services board that the force may have made "an error in judgement" in the case. Boyd is retiring Dec. 31.

Mrs. F had accused a constable from North York's 33 Division, identified only as Constable M. of offering to protect her from her husband in 1988 in exchange for sex.

The board of inquiry was stayed in 1992 after police lawyer Harry Black argued there had been an undue delay of nine months between the time Mrs. F. learned of the impending inquiry and when police were notified.

As a result, her accusations were never proved or disproved.

The woman's suit against McCormack and the Metro force -- filed on Dec. 17 with Ontario Court, general division, alleges that police began investigating her shortly after police were notified of the pending inquiry.

The investigation "included... attempts to illicit information about her character, finances, marriage, sexual habits and personality in pursuit of their objective to destroy (her) credibility," the suit alleges.

Detectives Roy Pilkington and Laila Juhani contacted the woman's former employers, friends and estranged husband and travelled to her hometown of Montreal as part of their investigation, the statement of claim says.

"They frightened and angered members of her family by the use of intimidation tactics designed to pressure (the woman) into renouncing her anticipated testimony at the board of inquiry," the statement adds.

About "Mrs. F"... [Fiona Stewart]

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