RCMP Const. Jason Tress leaves Red Deer provincial court on Monday. (Photo by PAUL COWLEY/Advocate staff)

RCMP officer facing sexual assault charges in court

Suspended Red Deer RCMP Const. Jason Tress facing sexual assault and breach of trust charges

A Red Deer RCMP officer charged with sexual assault made a brief appearance in Red Deer provincial court on Monday.

Const. Jason Tress appeared with his Edmonton lawyer, Robb Beeman. The case was adjourned to July 19.

Tress is facing two counts of sexual assault and two counts of breach of trust arising out of incidents involving three women in 2012 and 2016.

The charges were laid on March 29 after the Alberta Serious Incident Response Team (ASIRT) was directed last July by the Director of Law Enforcement to investigate an allegation that an RCMP officer sexually assaulted a woman in 2016 at the Red Deer detachment.

It is alleged two of the three incidents occurred while the officer was on duty.

That allegation led to further investigation and other charges.

Two of the alleged incidents occurred while the officer was posted in Red Deer. He was at a rural detachment when the alleged 2012 incident occurred.

Tress, an eight-year officer, was suspended with pay in August 2016 as a result of the initial allegations.

He will remain off duty until the internal processes and all criminal charges against him are resolved, says the RCMP.

A Crown prosecutor out of Calgary, Photini Papadatou, has been appointed to handle the case.

Beeman told Judge Jim Mitchell that he was meeting with Papadatou on July 5 to discuss the case.

pcowley@reddeeradvocate.com

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