Witnesses continue to testify in CK police officer sexual assault case

Chatham-Kent Police Service Headquarters, July 23, 2015. (Photo by Mike Vlasveld)

Testimony continued Thursday into allegations of a suspended Chatham-Kent police officer sexually assaulting a female coworker.

Constable Andrew Jaconelli has pleaded not guilty to two counts of discreditable conduct under the Police Services Act. The case stemmed from allegations that Jaconelli sexually assaulted a female colleague at her home on August 27, 2018.

A two-hour video recording of the complainant’s statement about the alleged sexual assault was presented Wednesday, the second day of Jaconelli’s disciplinary hearing.

The complainant recounted how Jaconelli showed up at her home drunk and made alleged sexual advances, even though she tried to refuse them.

Early in Thursday’s hearing, Inspector Michael Domony, a staff sergeant at the time, testified that he became aware the complainant spoke to her supervisor, Sergeant Kate McArthur, regarding the matter in September 2018.

“I became aware in early of October 2018,” testified Domony. “My first recollection was that sergeant McArthur told me that [the complainant] came to her with allegations against another member, Andrew Jaconelli and that there were sexual undertones to the complaint. I was also told [the complainant] didn’t want to move forward with it as a criminal matter for personal reasons.”

Donomy testified the delay in the investigation was due to the hesitancy of the complainant. In the video, the complainant revealed other aspects of her life, including a drug addiction, which made her hesitant to report the incident.

“On November 23, 2018, I attended her home address and spoke to her on two occasions,” said Donomy.  “We discussed the need to get a statement for her and who she felt would be the most appropriate person to go over this material.”

Donomy said he could tell by her body language that she was not comfortable talking to him about the incident. The complainant agreed to talk to Constable Jodie Foster, the officer who was given the complainant’s recording.

Both McArthur and Foster testified Wednesday that they believed the officer was telling the truth about what happened with Jaconelli.

Jaconelli, who has been suspended from duty with pay since criminal charges were laid on December 14, 2018, pleaded guilty to seven other counts of discreditable conduct Tuesday during the first day of the hearing.

Jaconelli’s disciplinary hearing is expected to continue on Friday, October 1, 2021.