Paramedic charged with sexual assault

JON WILLING, Sun Media

, Last Updated: 1:43 PM ET

OTTAWA -- An Ottawa paramedic with 25 years of service is accused of sexually assaulting a woman under his care.

Sexual assault detectives arrested Jean Roland Lauzon, 53, early Sunday after a woman in her 40s complained Saturday she was inappropriately touched. The alleged assault happened when the paramedic was examining a woman, police said.

The veteran paramedic appeared in an Ottawa court yesterday and was released on bail. A judge has not yet heard the allegations that support the one sexual assault charge.

Anthony DiMonte, chief of the Ottawa Paramedic Service, said the accused paramedic has been suspended until the criminal case is complete. A sexual assault allegation is a first for the organization.

“It has never happened in the history of the Ottawa Paramedic Service,” DiMonte said, addressing the investigation head-on by calling reporters to the paramedic headquarters for a briefing.

The accused paramedic has no related complaints on his professional record, DiMonte said. It’s also the first time the paramedic has been investigated by Ottawa police.

The criminal probe has prompted the paramedic service to start an internal investigation. DiMonte said he has taken the added step of notifying the Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care, which oversees the service.

Staff Sgt. John McGetrick, head of the Ottawa police sexual assault unit, said the alleged victim wasn’t physically hurt. Police have no reason to believe there are other possible victims but they’re asking the public for any information that could help their case, McGetrick said.

Details of the alleged assault were sketchy. Neither police or paramedics divulged any information about the call that led to the allegation.

McGetrick wouldn’t say if there was a third-party witness to the alleged assault, although DiMonte said the accused paramedic was on duty with a partner. DiMonte wouldn’t say if the partner was near when the alleged assault happened.

“This is an extremely serious allegation,” DiMonte said, noting the “sacred” trust patients place on paramedics.

Police are asking anyone who has additional information to call detectives at 613-236-1222, ext. 5944 or Crime Stoppers at 613-233-8477 (TIPS).

— with files from Shane Ross

jon.willing@sunmedia.ca


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