Mountie joked about movie not sex act, breach of trust trial hears in B.C.

By Tim Petruk, Kamloops This Week, The Canadian Press

KAMLOOPS, B.C. – Jokes about a soon-to-be released Hollywood movie, not images on closed-circuit video of two women having sex in a jail cell, are what caused a Mountie to laugh while surrounded by his colleagues, B.C. Supreme Court was told.

RCMP Const. Stephen Zaharia testified Friday in the Kamloops, B.C., trial of Cpl. Rick Brown who is charged with one count of breach of trust by a public officer.

Brown was the watch commander in the early morning hours of Aug. 18, 2010, when two intoxicated women engaged in explicit sex acts in a detachment jail cell.

The trial has heard Brown allegedly watched the sex acts via closed-circuit video with other Mounties, as well as jail guards, and nobody intervened.

The trial has also heard that as one of the women was being brought into jail she reported that she was HIV positive.

Zaharia was also implicated initially, but his charge was not proceeded with.

Zaharia said he was nearing the end of his final shift before a three-week vacation, when Const. Evan Elgee yelled at him to get to the cellblock.

Zaharia said he went to the cellblock and saw a group of five people huddled in a small room used for monitoring prisoners in jail cells.

In a video entered as evidence, Zaharia can be seen laughing while leaning against the door jamb of the guard room, appearing to watch the monitors.

Under questioning from Crown counsel Winston Sayson, Zaharia said he was joking with Elgee about an upcoming Hollywood release.

“Him and I are both movie buffs — we go to the movies a lot,” Zaharia said. “We were talking about what we were going to see.

“At that time, Resident Evil 3 was coming out in 3D. We were discussing how badly it was going to bomb — and it did.”

Elgee, who is now stationed at a detachment in New Brunswick, testified last week but made no mention of Resident Evil 3 or any conversation with Zaharia.

In fact, Elgee said he was mesmerized by what he saw on the monitor as the two women had sex.

“I had that euphoria of a deer caught in the headlights,” he said. “It was silent and still to me.”

Zaharia said he glanced at the monitor at one point and saw two prisoners lying down and fondling each other, but didn’t think much of it.

“My supervisor (Brown) was standing beside me,” he said. “I didn’t do anything because nobody else was doing anything.”

Earlier in the day, RCMP Const. Meagan Grainger testified she broke up an unrelated incident involving two female prisoners in July 2010.

She said she was called to the cellblock after a guard noticed two intoxicated female prisoners engaged in a sex act.

Grainger said she went into the cell and removed one of the women.

“I told them, ‘’This is inappropriate, it shouldn’t be happening and you’re being split up,'” she said.

“To put it simply, it’s common sense. That kind of conduct isn’t appropriate in our cellblock.”

The Crown expects to wrap up its case Monday. Closing arguments are slated to take place two days later, unless defence lawyer Glen Orris calls evidence.

Brown has been on paid administrative leave from the RCMP since August 2010.

(Kamloops This Week)

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