Cornwall Sex Abuse Scandal and Cover-Up
The information below is drawn from witness testimony at the Cornwall Public Inquiry and other relevant documents. I am working my way slowly through the transcripts and as I do so will be adding new dates, events and quotes and raising more questions.
On the date of initial posting of this material (21 April 2009) the information is largely related to the testimony of Ottawa Carleton Regional Police Service Superintendent Brian Skinner. Initially I was simply going to do a review of Skinner’s testimony, however I found that as I worked my way through it I had a multitude of questions regarding what had happened before this “external” review was commissioned. I have therefore incorporated a lot of material related to the unfolding of events at CPS from the time Perry Dunlop fulfilled his duty to report to the Children’s Aid Society.
At this moment the timelines touch on the start of but do not delve into the Skinner “investigation” – I am currently getting that material formatted and should have it incorporated within a day or so. I will also insert links to pages and documents.Once finished with the Skinner testimony I plan to tackle the testimony of other key witnesses and incorporate dates, events, quotes and questions into the timelines
My plan at this moment is, once finished with the Skinner testimony to move on to the testimony of Doug Seguin. Doug Seguin’s role in “Cornwall” has always intrigued me – I found that as I worked along on the Skinner material several references to Doug Seguin caught my eye – suffice to decide that I wanted to look more closely at Doug Seguin’s testimony, and that of other witnesses with relevant testimony, as well as at documents relevant to him.
A final note …. without doubt as I move along I will change a word here and a word there in existing text, and without doubt I will make comment on things which I had previously missed. I will make a point of noting any major changes on my blog (Sylvia’s Site).I invite readers to send along information which I have overlooked, and to pose any of the many questions which have escaped me. I will add to the list. Many heads are better than one.
When sending info from inquiry testimony please name the witness testifying and cite the date and page of the referenced testimony. I also invite comments and observations on the Blog. I will link Blog comments to the document.
This is going to be a pretty hefty document. I may well have to break it down – perhaps by groupings of years. I shall see as I progress. Any and all advice welcome 🙂
(i) David Silmser files sex abuse allegations against local priest Father Charles MacDonald and local probation officer and ex-seminarian Ken Seguin
[Details on the investigation and this entire time frame will be filled in at a later date.
There is contradictory evidence regarding the Silmser allegations against Ken Seguin – at this time they have not been investigated.
There is evidence that there was no work done on the allegations against Father Charles MacDonald after April 1993.
David Silmser has always said and testified that in August of 1993 he was told charges would not be laid against Father Charles and for that reason he agreed to a pay-off.
Affidavits of Ron Leroux contain allegations of a “VIP” meeting on Stanley Island around late August or early September 1993. There are claims these allegations were recanted during his examination in chief (for medical reasons Leroux did not undergo cross-examination). Since testifying Leroux continues to say there was a VIP meeting on Stanley Island – Leroux alleged he was pressured and threatened to say what he had to say on the stand.]
02 and 03 September 1993
(i) $32,000 pay-off of David Silmser. The Full Release and Undertaking Not to Disclose contains an illegal clause obliging Silmser to terminate any criminal proceedings underway against Father Charles MacDonald.
03 September 1993
(i) Malcolm MacDonald, lawyer for Father Charles MacDonald, talks to CPS S/Sgt Luc Brunet in the morning. The pair apparently discuss the ‘ settlement.’
(ii) Malcolm MacDonald writes to Brunet referencing the am phone call. Malcolm M attaches document prepared by lawyer Sean Adams and signed by David Silmser. The Full Release and Undertaking Not to Disclose is not attached.
08 September 1993
(i) CPS S/Sgt. Luc Brunet talks to Cornwall Crown attorney Murray MacDonald. Murray M allegedly tells Brunet that the Crown office does not prosecute without full cooperation of the victim. (09 September 1993 Brunet letter to Murray MacDonald)
09 September 1993
(i) S/Sgt Luc Brunet letter to Cornwall Crown Murray MacDonald. It would seem that Brunet is putting to paper the substance of a phone conversation between the pair of the previous day.
Brunet references the Malcolm M letter of 03 September 1993 and tells Murray M that Silmser said that he, Silmser, received a civil settlement to his satisfaction, received independent legal advice and that he no longer wants to proceed with criminal charges
14 September 1993
(i) Cornwall Crown attorney Murray MacDonald responds to the 09 September 1993 letter of S/Sgt. Luc Brunet.
Malcolm M states it is not policy to compel sex abuse victims to testify against their wishes. Murray M also makes comments which denigrate and/or belittle Silmser.
Murray M does not question the terms of the pay-off, nor does he suggest Brunet or anyone attain a copy of same to see what the terms of the deal are.
24 September 1993
(i) Perry talks to Cornwall Police Sgts, Ron Lefebvre and Claude Lortie and learns that a CPS criminal investigation into sex abuse allegations against Father Charles MacDonald and Ken Seguin has been terminated and that the diocese has paid David Silmser $32,000:
It was during the discussion with Sergeants Lefebvre and Lortie that I first learned that the investigation concerning Father Charles MacDonald and Ken Seguin had been recently terminated because the Catholic Diocese of Cornwall had made a monetary settlement of $32,000 dollars with the complainant. I have never, in all my years as a police officer, heard or seen a criminal investigation being terminated due to a monetary settlement or payoff. The investigation into the allegations made by the victim were deemed a high priority upon the initial intake by the Cornwall Police. (Perry Dunlop Will State)
(ii) Perry asks for and obtains the original victim statement from investigative officer Heidi Sebalj:
Constable Sebalj provided me with the original eight page victim’s statement which contained detailed allegations of sexual abuse by Father Charles MacDonald and Probation Officer Ken Seguin. (Perry Dunlop Will State)
(iii) Perry photocopies and returns the original statement to Sebalj. Shortly thereafter and upon request he provides copies of the statement to two of his superior officers:
After obtaining a copy of the statement I went to see two superior officer’s who both asked me for a copy of the statement I was under the impression they were going to perhaps take action. They also seemed to be under the same rational that the statement may disappear. They both asked for a copy of the statement. I gave both of them a copy of the D.S. statement. The officers were Staff Sergeant Lortie and Staff Sergeant Dupuis. (Perry Will State)
25 September 1993
(i) Perry talks about the David Silmser sex abuse allegations to Richard Abel, Executive Director of the Stormont Dundas Children’s Aid Society. Abell and Perry are friends.
Perry expresses his concerns that children are at risk.
26 September 1993
(i) Perry shows Abell a copy of the David Silmser victim statement.
Abell tells Perry that he has a statutory duty to report:
Mr. Abell viewed the statement but I retained possession of it. Mr. Abell informed me that I, as a police officer, had a duty to report any suspected child abuse. I was aware of this statutory duty to report already and believed that I was acting in accordance with my duty to report when I first approached Mr. Abell. I informed Mr. Abell that I would be speaking with Staff Sergeant Brunet to see what was going on with the case. (Perry Dunlop Will State)
28 September 1993
(i) Perry learns from Sebalj that there are other “victims” of Father Charles MacDonald:
On September 28, 1993, I approached Constable Sebalj and told her that I was concerned about the case. Constable Sebalj advised me that she had tried for a month to get in touch with the victim by telephone. I also learned at this time that there were other victims. They indicated they had been sexually assaulted as minors by Father Charles MacDonald.
As a police officer, I could not understand if other victims came forward, indicating that they too had been victims of Father Charles MacDonald, why the investigation was being terminated. Also, I wondered what the status was with regards to the allegations made by D.S. towards probation officer Ken Seguin.
I have learned, that little or no investigation was ever done on this case. Proper police protocol was not followed. (Perry Dunlop Will State)
(ii) Perry is concerned that children are at risk. He shares his concerns with senior officers:
Given the nature of and allegations contained in the victim’s statement and coupled with the fact that Constable Sebalj made me aware of other sexual assault victims of Father MacDonald, I continued to fear that there were children at risk in our community. I made Senior Officers of the Cornwall Police Service aware of my concerns and in fact, forwarded victim D.S.’s statement to them. (Perry Dunlop Will State)
(iii) On the evening of 28 September 1993 Perry calls Cornwall Crown attorney Murray MacDonald to set up a meeting to discuss his concerns. Perry considers Murray M to be a friend.
29 September 1993
(i) Perry meets with Murray MacDonald. At this time Murray M admits knowing about the sex abuse allegations against Father Charles but denies knowledge of those against Ken Seguin:
The Crown Attorney informed me that he was aware of the Father Charles MacDonald allegations but was not aware of the allegation of sexual abuse against Ken Seguin. The allegation against Ken Seguin was made in the same statement. I pointed out the exact location in the statement where the allegations against Ken Seguin of sexual assault had been made by the victim……I found it hard to believe that the Crown was not aware of the allegations against Probation Officer Ken Seguin, as it was mentioned in the victim’s statement. (Perry Dunlop Will State)
(ii) Perry seeks out and relates his concerns to S/Sgt Luc Brunet:
I said it made me sick to know that children were potentially at risk and that we had done little or nothing on this file. Brunet stated: “We can’t solve all the crimes a lot of times. We know who is responsible, but there is nothing we can do. I have spoken to Constable Kevin Malloy (a Cornwall Police Service Constable) who knows a lot about sexual assault and he said we need corroboration”. (Perry Will State)
According to Perry Brunet says because there is no complainant the investigation is over.
According to Perry Brunet says that neither Ken Seguin nor Father Charlie were confronted with the allegations or interviewed during the course of the CPS investigation, nor were they put under surveillance. (Perry Will State)
Perry says Brunet threatens him:
Brunet then stated: “You realize you can be charged for Breach of Trust under the Police Act. We would really hate to lose you, Perry. You’ve been through this before but you were single at the time. ( Brunet was making reference to an incident in 1985 where I was charged under the Police Services Act for failing to report damage to a police car of an approximate value of one hundred dollars.) Now you have a wife and three children to think about. You have your career to think about. You have to operate within the system or you are just as bad as a criminal. You know in these cases you have to dot your “i” and cross your “t”. (Perry Will State)
Brunet asked Perry to turn over any paperwork he had:
He then asked me if I had any paperwork on the case and said: “I want it returned. This is over and you have to let it be. I have spoken to the Crown. There is nothing we can do. This guy has settled. He (D.S.) has a lawyer and everything.” (Perry Will State)
Perry asked Brunet if there had been consideration given to going to see the bishop:
I said to Brunet: “Have you considered going to the Bishop?” He stated: “No, but that’s a good idea. Maybe the Chief and I could go down. But then that’s it. You have to let it go.” I said: “This is wrong. The way it was handled was wrong. No wonder the victim settled after waiting so long.” He said: “I agree and I guess I’m going to have to take some of the blame for this.” Our conversation ended when his phone rang. I felt threatened for my job. (Perry Will State)
(iii) According to S/Sgt Garry Derochie’s testimony Murray M told Perry and Lortie on 29 September that they could either go to Correctional Services or CAS. Murray allegedly disclosed this information to Derochie during an 06 December 1993 meet with the Crown:
MR. DEROCHIE: That’s right and it was, if – if the service can’t lay a charge, maybe we could deal with the community safety concerns by going to CAS or the Ministry of Correctional Services. (Derochie testimony 03 March 2008)
(A) By now word had to be travelling within the CPS that Perry was upset about the termination of the criminal investigation and extremely concerned that children in the community were at risk. Why no such concern from other CPS officers?
30 September 1993
(i) Upon request Perry Dunlop gives Richard Abell a copy of the David Silmser victim statement.
(ii) Abel gives a copy of the statement to CAS staffers Bill Carriere, Angelo Towndale, and Elizabeth MacLennan. On the afternoon of the 30th Abel meets with the three. According to his notes all three agree the statement re Father Charles is credible and they have a duty to investigate:
“It presents as a highly credible statement, very likely that there was other abuse of Silmser not mentioned in the statement; likely other victims; good possibility of present abuse of children by Charlie MacDonald.” (Abel testimony 24 October 2008)
“Strong consensus we have duty to open an investigation based on concern for present abuse of children.” (Abel testimony 24 October 2008)
(iii) The CAS meet on the 30th is the genesis of the CAS probe into Silmser’s allegations against Father Charles. At some point the probe is dubbed Project Blue.
(iv) The CAS group agree to ask Cornwall Police Chief Claude Shaver if he wants to re-open the Silmser investigation and conduct a joint probe. They also agree that if Shaver declines they will proceed anyway.
(v) Silmser’s victim statement includes sex abuse allegations against local probation officer Ken Seguin. Seguin is then still active as a probation officer. While the CAS responds to the Charlie allegations with plans to launch a full scale investigation (Project Blue) it does not seem equally concerned that Seguin is out and about in the community.
The Seguin sex abuse allegations are not pursued.
(vi) CAS officials soon learn that Silmser also alleges sexual abuse by local Roman Catholic school teacher Marcel Lalonde. The CAS does not seem alarmed that Lalonde is out and about in the community – as with Seguin the allegations against Lalonde are not pursued.
(vii) Project Blue is the first and last such probe conducted by CAS.
(A) There were sex abuse allegations against a local priest, a local probation officer and a local teacher. All three men were still active in their jobs and in the community. Why did the CAS limit its concerns that children were at risk to the allegations against Charlie?
(B) There has been much ado about the release of the Silmser statement to the media. How many CAS staff were given, acquired and/or had access to the David Silmser victim?
01 October 1993
(i) Chief Shaver goes to the CAS. The 04 November 1993 notes of S/Sgt Derochie recap his account of the meeting as later related to him by Rick Abel:
“On October 1st the Chief came to C.A.S. and met Abell and Townsdale and discussed the case. There was frank discussion about how C.A.S. had become involved…with subsequent discussion on why C.A.S. had not received disclosure. Abell advised that the Chief was upset over Dunlop’s involvement in this investigation. On October 8th the Chief and S/Sgt Brunet met with Abell and Townsdale at CAS. They were advised of the results of the meeting the Chief and Brunet had with the church
We continued to talk about the particulars of the case and Abell said that the suspects fit a profile which normally indicate a pattern of abuse of multiple victims being abused over many years. As is the case when members of the Church are involved, coverups are sometime involved. He believed that this might be the case in this incident…Silmser had been paid off to keep things quiet. Abell also informed me that they were not involving themselves with looking into Ken Seguin’s involvement. Their Ministries were not connected as previously thought and they were not prepared to enter the same type of investigation they were doing on MacDonald. (No further explanation??)
He told me that he would be pleased if our Service re-opened and re-investigated the criminal end of this matter.”
(ii) According to Rick Abel’s notes of the day, Shaver’s first response to news that Perry gave a copy of the Silmser statement to CAS is related to Perry going to the CAS:
“I told him what I had, from whom, when. Claude, he’s got a big issue to deal with re Perry Dunlop going outside channels.” (Abel testimony 24 October 2008)
According to Perry, Shaver was livid when he visited Abell:
I have been told and do verily believe that the Chief of Police, Claude Shaver, went wild when he found out I had visited the Children’s Aid Society. In fact, he went to Children’s Aid Society to confront Mr. Abell and was furious that I had gone outside the Police Service. There has been evidence given at my Police Act trial that indicates the former Chief of Police had hands on this investigation from the onset and was not following proper police protocol. (Perry Will State)
According to Abel’s notes of the meet
– Shaver would have liked the criminal investigation into Silmser’s allegations against Father Charlie to continue but the financial ‘settlement’ got in the way.
– “Chief says his department ‘screwed up big time'” and “Investigation not done. Put on ‘back burner’.” (Abel testimony 24 October 2008)
– Shaver feels his force was used by Silmser to get money from the Church.” (Abel testimony 24 October 2008)
– Shaver questions CAS’ ability to proceed with an investigation:
“He questioned my ability to proceed on the basis of out of channel information.” (Abel testimony 24 October 2008)
– Shaver asks CAS to hold on its investigation for a spell to give himself an opportunity to check things out. Abell agrees to postpone for a week at which time the pair will meet again (08 October 1993):
“Chief asked for time to see the file; deal with Sean Adams, lawyer for Silmser. Get the letter notifying that the complaint is being withdrawn. We agreed to meet next Friday p.m. Said I would have to take a decision at that time on our investigation.” (Abel testimony 24 October 2008)
(iii) At this time Richard Abel begins to keep a record of events. According to his testimony he decides after receiving the Silmser statement that CAS would be investigating the matter:
MR. ABELL: Well, it was — I was aware it was a matter that was going to — that needed some attention and priority and so I wanted to start keeping a record so I sat down the 1st and pulled together everything that had happened.
MR. ENGELMANN: Would it be fair to say by that time that you had made a decision that your Agency was going to be investigating this matter?
MR. ABELL: October the 1st, it would be thereabouts.
MR. ENGELMANN: Okay.
MR. ABELL: Yes, thereabouts. (Abel testimony 24 October 2008)
(iv) Perry has an entry in his Will State regarding a Shaver meet with Abell. Perry apparently received this information sometime in late October before Ken Seguin’s death. It would seem this may be reference to the 01 October 1993 Shaver-Abell meet. Here is the entry:
Sometime prior to [12 October 1993] Chief Shaver attended Children’s Aid Society and spoke to Richard Able. I am informed that Chief Claude Shaver was very agitated on this visit. He banged his fist on Richard Abell’s desk and stated that he would get Constable Dunlop for his action in taking this matter out of house. Richard Able attended my house to inform me to keep low, “it appears they are coming for your head”. The message I received from Richard Abell was that my job was on the line, if not over. This was around the end of October 1993 prior to Ken Seguin committing suicide. (Perry Dunlop Will State)
07 October 1993
(i) Deputy Chief St. Denis requests that S./Sgt. Garry Derochie conduct an internal investigation intoPerry Dunlop’s actions in providing Silmser’s victim statement to the Children’s Aid Society.
According to Derochie’s testimony and evidence his mandate is not to look at mismanagement but at“Dunlop’s actions of discussing this matter with his wife and his subsequently giving CAS a copy of the statement.”
MR. ENGELMANN: So he [Shaver]wanted you to focus on that, not focus on possible mismanagement or other issues?
MR. DEROCHIE: That’s true. (Dercohie testimony)
Also according to Derochie testimony
– There will be another investigation which will focus on management issues – the Dunlop investigation is to be done first.
– According to Derochie testimony at this time St. Denis is thinking in terms of having Perry charged with breach of trust
MR. DEROCHIE: The issue that I’m to look into is how — how the — a letter given by a sexual assault victim was given to CAS.
MR. ENGELMANN: And there’s a contemplation, at least by the Deputy Chief at that time, that Constable Dunlop could be charged with a breach of trust?
MR. DEROCHIE: That’s correct.
MR. ENGELMANN: And a couple of times on that first page there’s a reference to him having no authority or no permission to release a particular document to the Children’s Aid Society. (Dercohie testimony 28 February 2008)
According to the note assigning Derochie to the task, St. Denis had apparently already decided that Perry’s actions were a serious violation of trust and had to be dealt with:
“There is a very serious violation of trust here which must be dealt with in a timely manner.” (Dercohie testimony 28 February 2008)
As lead commission counsel Peter Engelmann pointed out, St.Denis is not saying ‘find out if there was a breach of trust,’ he’s indicating there was a breach of trust and he wants Derochie to look into it:
MR. ENGELMANN: … He’s not saying, “Find out if there was.” He’s saying, “I think there is and I want you to look at it.”
MR. DEROCHIE: That’s exactly what he’s saying, yes.
It would seem that Luc Brunet is of like mind as St. Denis. The referenced note directs Derochie to see Brunet “ for all the facts.”
MR. ENGELMANN: All right. And he’s telling you to “see Luc for all the facts”?
MR. DEROCHIE: To see Staff Sergeant Luc Brunet to be briefed on all the details, yes. (Dercohie testimony 28 February 2008)
It is obvious that Shaver, Brunet, St. Denis and Derochie do not concur that police officers have a duty to report under the Child and Family Services Act.
The CPS launches an investigation into Perry Dunlop’s actions.
(ii) By accident or design this is the same day that Chief Claude Shaver, accompanied by S/Sgt Luc Brunet, heads off to Ottawa to visit theApostolic Pro-Nuncio. Shaver is allegedly suddenly concerned that Father Charlie is still functioning as a parish priest. ( David Silmser first reported his allegations against Father Charlie to CPS in December 1992. For ten months there was no apparent concern on the part of Shaver or Brunet that Charlie was functioning as a parish priest in nearby St. Andrew’s. )
(iii) After meeting with the Nuncio Shaver and Brunet go to talk to Bishop Eugene Larocque. According to Perry
“ I have been informed that on October 7, 1993, Chief Shaver and Staff Sergeant Brunet met with the Archbishop in Ottawa, the representative of the Pope in Canada. Later that same day, Chief Shaver and Staff Sergeant Brunet also had a meeting with Bishop Larocque in Cornwall. I have been informed that the Bishop confirmed that Father Charles MacDonald admitted to the Bishop he was a homosexual. (Perry Dunlop Will State)
(A) What and who prompted this puzzling flurry of belated CPS activity? Is it the hope of some that this will convince CAS that the matter is being handled appropriately and that the CAS will in turn drop its plan to investigate the allegations against Charlie?
(B) Why no such flurry on behalf of the Chief and Brunet regarding the sex abuse allegations against Ken Seguin and Marcel Lalonde? Why, for example, did Shaver feel it was apropos to go to Nuncio and Bishop re Charlie and not to go to Seguin’ and Lalonde’s superiors?
(C) Presumably by this time no one at CPS had seen or sought the documents related to the $32,000 pay-off. Why not?
(D) Did CPS officers truly not know that children are at risk when an accused molester is out and about?
(E) Why was Derochie, Perry’s boss, assigned to investigate Perry? As Perry stated in his Will State: “I found it very unusual that my own Staff Sergeant would be assigned, and agreed to investigate me. This was not the usual police service procedure.”
08 October 1993
(i) Shaver, along with Luc Brunet, go back to see Abel. Abel is told of the pair’s meet with the Nuncio the preceding day and of their subsequent meet with Bishop Larocque.
According to Rick Abell during the 08 October meet, Shaver relays word from Larocque that Father Charles MacDonald will be taken out of his parish and sent off to Southdown:
MR. ENGELMANN: And you’re advised that Father MacDonald will be — apparently, the advice he receives is that he will be moving him out of the parish, send him to a church program in Barrie where priests are assessed and treated? (Abel testimony 24 October 2008)
According to Abell Shaver relates that he was allegedly told by Larocque that Charlie put $10,000 of his own money into the pay-off, the bishop put in $10,000 for treatment, and someone else put in $10,000 or $12,000.
MR. ENGELMANN “Charlie put in $10,000…” Is it “of his own money”?
MR. ABELL: “Of his own money”, yes.
MR. ENGELMANN: “Bishop put in $10,000 from the Diocese for treatment and someone else puts in $10,000 or $12,000.”
MR. ABELL: Yes. (Abel testimony 24 October 2008)
During the 08 October meet Shaver allegedly uses the word “pay-off” when relating what Larocque had to say the previous day. According to Abel’s notes Shaver says Bishop Larocque told him that he, Larocque, was against the “pay-off” but had acted the on advice of lawyers Leduc and Malcolm MacDonald. (Abel testimony 24 October 2008)
(A) Why for the duration of the inquiry did the gathered throng insist on referring to the pay-off as a “settlement.”? It was a pay-off. David Silmser was paid off – illegally.
(B) Why did word of the breakdown of the pay-off not trigger CPS to demand documents? Surely there was some degree of interest in who threw money into the pot to save Charlie?
12 October 1993
(i) Abel, accompanied by Angelo Townsend and Bill Carriere, meets with Bishop Larocque. According to Abel Larocque is taken aback that CAS is investigating:
“He’s taken aback that we will investigate.” (Abel testimony 24 October 2008)
Abell reports of that meeting that
– Larocque is not keen to dig into the facts:
MR. ABELL: … I’m going to draw from my notes, you know, he says he wants to monitor — I’ve underlined “monitor”. I believe that’s the level at which he would have — he expected the whole thing would be handled. It would be kind of, “Let’s watch and see” kind of a stance. . . Rather than, “Let’s go dig. We’re going to go dig.” (Abel testimony 24 October 2008)
– Larocque expresses concern about publicity and about Father Charlie’s reputation. (Abel testimony 24 October 2008)
– Larocque said Charlie was sent off to Southdown the previous Sunday and would be back on Friday (15 October).
– Abel tells the bishop that he doesn’t want Charlie around the parish while the CAS is investigating:
“We say we want him out of the parish to allow us to investigate. Bishop, very reluctant.” (Abel testimony 24 October 2008)
– Larocque and Abell et al finally agree that it will be good enough if Charlie is kept away for two weeks:
MR. ABELL: I believe that was a saw-off that we agreed to at the time. It wasn’t going to be enough; we certainly knew that. I mean, he held his ground on this for a while. We really had to bat this one around for a while. He really wanted to bring Father MacDonald back relatively quickly. And, again, it had to do with the rumour mill getting started and, you know, the public image of him as an accused. So that was his position. (Abel testimony 24 October 2008)
– Larocque refers to the pay-off as a ““nuisance settlement”.
– Larocque makes some comment about David Silmer being a bad character who has been “in and out of jail” – Larocque says Charlie denied the allegations
– Larocque tells the CAS team that Charlie admitted being homosexual, but not when he was teaching, and not in the past four years, and only with teens/adults and that contacts were at times initiated by “partners.” (Abel testimony 24 October 2008)
(ii) Perry is finally told he is under investigation:
On October 12, 1993. Staff Sergeant Derochie, my immediate supervisor in uniform, asked if he could speak with me in private at the Police Club. On this particular night we were having a squad meeting. He said: “Before you hear it from anyone else, I am investigating you under the Police Services Act. I have already taken a couple of statements. “It has to do with the Father Charlie case.” (Perry Dunlop Will State)
(A) How did Bishop Larocque manage to have control as to how long Charlie would be in Southdown? Did Larocque have a deal of sorts worked out with Southdown? Was the Soutdown foray no more that P.R? Or was Larocque just going to bring Charlie back to Cornwall no matter what Southdown staff about the priest’s condition and/or his need for treatment?
(B) Why would any Roman Catholic bishop be anxious to re-install a priest who has admitted having homosexual relationships with his parishioners, both teen adult?
(C) Does Bishop Larocque think it is a good that Charlie was engaging in homosexual relationships as a priest but not as a school teacher?
(D) Where did Larocque get his information about David Silmser? From Charlie? and/or Malcolm? and/or Jacques Leduc?
(E) Does Bishop Larocque think that everything that Silmser says about Father Charlie is a lie because Silmser was in trouble with the law?
(F) Why did it take six days for CPS officials to tell Perry he was under investigation?
14 October 1993
(i) S/Sgt. Garry Derochie meets with Rick Abell. According to Abel’s notes of the meet:
– Derochie can’t see any grounds for Police Act charges against Perry:
“Says he can’t see grounds for Police Act charge, misconduct if anything, says an officer’s highest duty is to safety of community.” (Abel testimony 24 October 2008)
– Derochie feels that if CPS made mistakes then there should be a proper investigation
“If we made mistakes, we should do damage control, get busy and do a proper investigation.” (Abel testimony 24 October 2008)
– Derochie feels Ken Seguin should be investigated. Derochie also makes mention of “stories” about Seguin: “Repeats Chief’s comment that there have been ‘stories’ about Seguin for some time.” Abel testified that he has no recollection of Shaver saying such a thing but that that must have been the case because of the way he wrote this entry. (Abel testimony 24 October 2008)
– According to Derochie’s notes of the same date:
– ” After speaking with Abell I had serious concerns about the whole issue of mismanagement of the case over shadowing Dunlop’s involvement – I met with the Chief and the Deputy they were both aware of all the facts relative to this investigation” (Derochie notes)
– “the Chief and D/C agreed that the Dunlop issue was secondary and that the real problem (criminal investigation) would be dealt with.” (Derochie notes)
– According to Derochie’s 08 January 1994 Dunlop Report, he, Shaver and D/C St. Denis decide on this date that Police Act charges against Perry are not warranted.
All of the facts surrounding this issue were discussed and it was resolved at this time, that Police Act Charges against Constable Dunlop did not appear warranted, but that some other form of disciple would be employed.
(ii) Helen Dunlop pays a personal visit to Chief Claude Shaver’s residence. She is upset with the way Perry is being treated.
(iii) Project Blue actively starts its investigation. Greg Bell investigates full time for ten weeks. He apparently continues to work on the file on a part time basis afterwards.
(A) Did Derochie see the reinvestigation of the Silmser investigation as no more than “ damage control”?
15 October 1993
(i) Derochie is now assigned to review the CPS investigation of David Silmser’s allegations. It is difficult to sort out if at this time the Dunlop investigation concludes or is put on the back burner – there is contradictory evidence. What does seem to be clear is a decision has been taken that Perry is to be counselled.
Regardless, on 15 October 1993 Shaver asks Derochie to review how the CPS had handled the Silmser allegations. According to Derochie’s notes
– “I was instructed to determine the chain of events from the time the complaint was received right up to its current status.” (read in during Derochie testimony)
(ii) According to Derochie notes of 15 October 1993 it seems that a conclusion has been reached that (A) in the minds of St, Denis, Derochie and Shaver, Perry had done wrong,(B) St. Denis and Derochie felt there should be a conduct report, and (C) Shaver wanted the lesser remedy of counseling. (Derochie notes of 15 October 1993):
According to excerpts from Derochie’s report
– “After speaking with Mr. Abell I returned to the office the next day, October 15th, 1993…”
– “…the Chief had instructed me to deal with Constable Dunlop as soon as possible. I met with the Chief and Deputy Chief and we had a lengthy discussion on how Constable Dunlop should be disciplined. The Chief wanted the matter handled by way of a counselling session and he had prepared an outline of what tone these sessions should take.”
– “The Deputy and I favoured a conduct report in line with our agreement with the Cornwall Police Association on informal discipline. We defer to the Chief’s wishes on this matter. So as long as the counselling session was supported by documentation, I could leave with the Chief’s decision on this one.” (Derochie Report as quoted during St. Denis testimony of 06 June 2008)
(iii) A decision is made that Perry Dunlop is to be counseled. Perry has not been interviewed by Derochie – but obviously Derochie et al conclude that while charges under the Police Service Act are not warranted nonetheless in their eyes Perry had done wrong and that the remedy for the wrong doing should be the minimal one of counseling, the latter remedy allegedly favoured by Shaver.
The counseling isn’t done, initially apparently because Perry is off sick for a few days, then because, according to Derochie, other things came up.
Under cross examination by Allan Manson (Citizens for Community Renewal) Derochie agrees that he was prepared to discipline Perry on 15 October and that that would be the end of it. He also agrees that the disciple wasn’t conducted that day and for whatever just was never done.
MR. MANSON: Very quickly, in your review at the instructions of the Chief but with your concurrence, the two of you decided that he should be counselled because of the way he handled the confidential Silmser complaint; correct?
MR. DEROCHIE: That’s correct.
MR. MANSON: That was going to be the end of the discipline as far as you were concerned; correct?
MR. DEROCHIE: Yes.
MR. MANSON: And just to make a long story short, you were prepared to do it on October 15th, 1993 but he booked off sick?
MR. DEROCHIE: Yes.
MR. MANSON: And when he came back on the 20th, there just wasn’t the right time or the appropriate time and it didn’t happen; correct?
MR. DEROCHIE: And we had decided by that time to deal with the other issues surrounding my review as opposed to it. (Derochie testimony)
This is at odds with Derochie’s 08 January 1994 report on the Dunlop investigation. Therein Derochie writes that the Silmser reinvestigation is to be conducted prior to disciplining Perry:
“Staff Sergeant Derochie was further tasked with reviewing the investigation into Mr. Silmser’s complaint of being sexually assaulted. It was determined that because Constable Dunlop’s actions were motivated by the outcome of the criminal investigation, that this second assignment should be dealt with before Constable Dunlop was disciplined.”
Note that Derochie writes that the Silmser review (re-investigation) should be conducted “before Constable Dunlop was disciplined” because Perry’s actions “were motivated by the outcome of the criminal investigation.”
As can be seen this is at odds with the above referenced 15 October 1993 decision to counsel Perry. True the counseling was never accomplished, but, according to Derohcie himself, the counseling of Perry Dunlop was not deferred because, as he would later write, a decision was made to proceed with the Silmser re-investigation “before Constable Dunlp was disciplined.”
The counseling as remedy was deferred in the first instance because Perry was not available, and in the second because of negligence, and/or incompetence, and/or laziness, and/or some other unknown change in the CPS plan of action.
(iv)By October 15 and before interviewing him Derochie is expressing some very biased and derogatory opinions of Perry. In his notes of that date for example, Derochie writes:
“Constable Dunlop was not prepared to take any criticism for his actions in this incident. He sees himself as a white knight fighting the good fight.”
On the witness stand Derochie is at loose ends to explain how he came to those conclusions regarding Perry:
MR. DEROCHIE: This is what I’m — this is my opinion at the time. It’s not based — I can’t point to a specific event that made me believe that, but it just seemed that the way things were going that there was some discussion between Perry and other people with regards to the situation or what he had done, what his strategy was going to be in dealing with me on this issue, and I just reached that opinion.
I don’t know, you know, I don’t know to this day if I was right or if I’m wrong on that opinion, but that was my sense.
MR. ENGELMANN: I’m just wondering why that was your opinion at that time?
MR. DEROCHIE: It just seemed that everything that was going on led me to believe that there might be something going on in the background that I’m not aware of.
(A) Is the momentary switch in focus from Perry to the CPS Silmser investigation no more than CPS window dressing because the CAS has launched Project Blue? Is it, in Derochie’s own words, “damage control”?
(B) Why the confusion and contradictions surrounding the status of the Dunlop investigation? If a decision was made to counsel Perry as a remedy clearly a decision had been made that he had done wrong, and clearly that decision was the outcome of Derochie’s investigation, and clearly the investigation, such as it was, had concluded.
And why did Derochie write in his 08 January 1994 Dunlop report that a decision had been made to conduct the Silmser reinvestigation before Perry was disciplined when in fact Derochie had been assigned to conduct the re-investigation and to discipline Perry on 15 October 1993? Is it just me or does something here smell to high Heaven?
(B) Why did the CPS not participate in Project Blue?
(C) Perry fulfilled his legal obligation to protect children. What kind of criticism did Derochie and others think Perry should take for doing the right thing?
(D) How does a police S/Sgt. get away with drawing conclusions without any factual basis? Derochie felt there “might be something going on in the background?” Such as? And based on what evidence?
(F) With such personal bias and animus against Perry why did Derochie not declare personal conflict and bow out of any Perry-related investigations?
(G) With such a known bias and animus against Perry why was Derochie chosen to act as liaison with officers in subsequent external investigations?
(H) Several persons allege that Shaver was a friend of, amongst others, Father Charlie, Ken Seguin and Malcolm MacDonald. Shaver seems to be the one who wanted to go easy on Perry discipline wise. While most at CPS seemed to be, for unknown reasons, jumping up and down to get Perry for doing his legal and moral duty was there perhaps good cause for Shaver’s desire to go gently?
29 October 1993
(i) Abell is told by Larocque – via Jacques Leduc – that Charlie will not be going back to St. Andrew’s “And Father MacDonald will not be going back into the parish.” (Abel testimony 27 October 2008) (ii) According to Abel’s notes David Silmser was contacted by Greg Bell by phone to set up a meeting: “Greg talked to David Silmser to get an appointment. Concerned he will lose his money if he talks to us.” “Appointment for next Thursday. Silmser to be assured. Jacques L. will assure him or his lawyer that he can speak to us without penalty.” (Abel testimony 27 October 2008)
(A) What prompted the change of heart with Larocque? Damage control? Did he realize that things were bubbling furiously and he had best do what at least looked to be the right thing?
02 November 1993
(i) Chief Shaver announces an early retirement. Shaver is retiring, but, according to St. Denis, still in control of Dunlop discipline issues:
“On November 2nd, 1993, Chief Shaver announced his retirement, but he was still firmly in control of decisions with respect to Constable Dunlop’s discipline.” (St Denis testimony 06 June 08)
(ii) Shaver, Derochie and St. Denis meet and the Dunlop situation is apparently discussed. According to St. Denis’s testimony the Dunlop investigation has been delayed pending a report on the Silmser re-investigation.
Derochie’s notes of 02 November read:
“November 2nd 1993, I met with Chief Shaver and Deputy Chief St. Denis. At this time, I renewed my concerns about dealing with Constable Dunlop first before I had a complete picture of what had occurred with the investigation. I also gave my opinion to the effect that Constable Dunlop’s motives no longer appear to be so clear to me. They agree that I should complete my review of the investigation before dealing with Constable Dunlop.” (Derochie notes and St Denis transcript 06 June 2009)
St. Denis agreed in his testimony that at this point the Dunlop investigation is being delayed:
MR. DUMAIS: All right. So certainly at this point-in-time, it appears that the Dunlop matter is being delayed; correct?
MR. ST. DENIS: Yes, sir.
MR. DUMAIS: And the intent is to await for the investigation of the report to be completed; correct? ( St Denis transcript 06 June 2009)
St. Denis agrees.
(A) Again, contradictions regarding Perry. AmI missing something here? Why would there have been a plan to counsel Perry if the Dunlop investigation wasn’t finished? And if an agreement had been made that Perry was to be disciplined for going to the CAS, why the talk of delaying the Dunlop investigation?
How many investigations concluding that Perry should be disciplined was the CPS prepared to conduct?
(B) Why would St. Denis be annoyed that Shaver was still in control of Perry’s discipline? Did he want to throw the book at Perry?
(C) Why the animus toward Perry? Was it because his fellow officers felt shamed that Perry was concerned enough about the safety of children that he fulfilled his legal obligation to go to CAS? and they didn’t?
(D) How much investigating was necessary to determine that Perry did indeed give the Silmser statement to Rick Abel? Perry readily admitted he had done so when asked to do so by Abell. Abel acknowledged he asked for and received the victim statement from Perry.
(E) What was the CPS looking for in this investigation? Why was this going on and on and on? Perry said he was concerned about children, he believed he had a legal duty to report, and he therefore fulfilled his legal obligation to report. What else was there to sort out? None of the other CPS officers fulfilled their legal obligation to report. Perry did. End of investigation.
(F) What difference does it make to the Dunlop investigation what the CPS did or did not do in its Silmser investigation? Why this belated talk of conducting the Silmser investigation first? If everything the CPS did was above board and according to hoyle , and vice versa if it wasn’t, and if in the end Charlie managed to worm out through a $32,000 pay-off, would Perry be deemed more or less guilty by his superiors for going to the CAS?
04 November 1993
(i) On 04 November 1993, if not before, Derochie and probably other CPS officers are made aware of talk of sexual misconduct on the part of several prominent Cornwall citizens.
According to Derochie’s notes of that date:
“informed that Malcolm MacDonald is suspected of sexual misconduct involving young boys”
Derochie believes that he, Sebalj and Luc Brunet may have discussed this information. He testified that he has no recollection of where he heard it.
– As of this date Derochie is apparently aware of talk that Charlie’s lawyer Malcolm MacDonald ‘ likes little boys’ and that Malcolm, Charlie and Ken Seguin are good friends. According to Derochie’s notes
“I was also advised that Malcolm MacDonald (Father MacDonald’s lawyer) is also rumoured to have a sexual preference for little boys. I was told that Seguin, Father MacDonald and A.M. MacDonald are close friends and move within the same circles.” (Derochie’s notes of 04 November 1993)
– The talk about Malcolm as a molester of “little boys” was not pursued by CPS.
– For some strange reason, witness the following, when Derochie was on the witness stand at the inquiry he did a little tap dancing over Malcolm’s “preference” for “little boys”:
MR. ENGELMANN: And you’ve also heard some rumours about Malcolm MacDonald, himself; correct?
MR. DEROCHIE: That’s correct.
MR. ENGELMANN: And what were they, sir?
MR. DEROCHIE: That — that he was homosexual and preferred — his preference, his sexual preference was towards young — young people.
[Derochie corrected “young people” to marry with his notes which state “ little boys.”] . (Derochie testimony 03 March 2008)
– On 04 November 1993 Derochie knows that Malcolm MacDonald is representing both Ken Seguin and Father Charles MacDonald. (Derochie testimony 03 March 2008) – Derochie’s notes indicate that on 04 November 1993 he knows that Cornwall Crown attorney Murray MacDonald’s father was previously convicted for sexually abusing a young boy.
(ii) It is unclear but seems that it is 04 November 1993 that Derochie meets with Rick Abell.
During a meet with Derochie Abel suggests it would be nice to have someone from CPS join CAS in conducting the investigation. According to Abel’s testimony:
“Told him we had a project team. Invited him to take part or someone else.” (Abel testimony 27 October 2008)
At the same meet according to Abel’s testimony
– Derochie says he is now investigating both Perry and the Silmser investigation. (Abel testimony 27 October 2008)
– Luc Brunet allegedly denied a CAS request for other names of alleged Charlie victims. (Abel testimony 27 October 2008)
(A) Why did no one start checking into Malcolm to find out if the ‘rumour’ had any merit?
(B) Why did not at least one alarm bell go off with word that Malcolm may be a molester and also that he was good friends with Ken Seguin and Charlie? Why at this point and with this knowledge did no one from CPS ask to see the pay-off documentation?
(C) Why with this information in hand regarding Malcolm MacDonald did Derochie et al not question what information Malcolm had or might have relayed to Heidi Sebalj? and likewise why did they not question what information Sebalj had or might have relayed to Malcolm regarding the status of her investigation? Rumour or not it surely should have been investigated in some depth.
(D) How much evidence does it take for CPS officers to at least think in terms of a ring?
(E) If the date of 04 November is accurate, was or was not the Dunlop investigation on the back burner or completed by this date? It seems that either way there was no active investigation. Why then did Derochie tell Abell that he, Derochie, was conducting two investigations?
(F) If CPS want to get to the truth, why Brunet’s refusal to provide the names of other alleged victims?
05 November 1993
(i) Further CAS contact with David Silmser. David Silmser is described as co-operative by CAS’ Greg Bell. He certainly was not hostile to the fact that CAS was in on his allegations. According to Derochie’s notes:
“15:30 received a call from Gregory Bell of CAS. He informed me that he had spoken to Silmser at about 1:30 P.M. yesterday. He described Silmser as being quite amicable and willing to co-operate, not at all the same person Sebalj described at 9:05 A.M. (Derochie notes)
(A) Who later convinced David Silmser and/or his lawyer to go after Perry for going to the CAS? Dave was never upset that the CAS was involved.
Mid November 1993
(i) Derochie has been re-investigating the Silmser allegations while continuing with other duties. Around mid November he is tasked with the full time investigation of the Silmser allegations.
According to Derochie testimony on or about mid November 1993 he is taken off his regular shifts in order to commit to re-investigate the Silmser investigation full time. (Derochie testimony 29 February 2008)
(A) Why did it take weeks for CPS to seriously commit to a re-investigation of the Silmser allegations?
(B) Why did CPS not join forces with the CAS Project Blue investigation?
24 November 1993
(i) According to Derochie’s notes of 25 November 1993, David Silmser called CPS on the night of the 24th expressing concern for his own life:
I received a telephone call from S/Sgt Dupuis he advised me of the following;
D.S. had called the Service on Wednesday night at about 9:00 P.M. He spoke to S/Sgt. Dupuis and advised him that he wanted a report on file that he was involved in a civil action involving several people and sexual abuse. He said he was seeking a large sum of money and that if he did not get it within 48 hours that he was going to the press. He further told Dupuis that if anything happened to him that Ken Seguin and Charlie should be considered suspects. He said that reputations are at stake including that of a Judge. (Derochie notes 25 November 1993)
(A) Why did Silmser fear for his life? What was said to him, and by whom, that prompted him to make such a call?
(B) Who was the judge referenced by Silmser? Was there enough interest by anyone at CPS to find out?
25 November 1993
(i) Ken Seguin is found dead, apparently suicide.
(ii) The Ontario Provincial Police launches an investigation into the Seguin death.
(iii) The OPP seek out Perry Dunlop to ask for and obtain a copy of the Silmser victim statement:
On November 25, 1993, I was at a restaurant in Cornwall, eating dinner with a Crown Attorney, an Ontario Provincial Police Officer and a professional Engineer. Two Ontario Provincial Police Officers (Randy Millar & Chris McDonnell) entered the restaurant, came over to me and told me that Ken Seguin had committed suicide. The body had been located at his residence this date.
The officers told me that they had visited my residence in order to locate me. The officers asked me if I had a copy of the D.S. victim statement. I told them that 1 did. The officers wanted to obtain a copy from me as they felt that the Cornwall Police may not be willing to provide the said statement. I agreed to do so, and the following day they came to my residence and I provided them with a copy of the statement. (Perry Dunlop Will State)
(iv) Derochie’s Silmser re-investigation comes to an abrupt halt or stalls. For some strange reason Derochie is re-assigned to his regular duties.
On the witness stand Derochie is unclear as to how much work if any he put into the Silmser re-investigation after that:
MR. ENGELMANN: …you indicated to us that about three weeks later, some time in late November, after Mr. Seguin’s suicide and the OPP gets involved —
MR. DEROCHIE: M’hm.
MR. ENGELMANN: — you stop working on it.
MR. DEROCHIE: Yes, I don’t know if I completely stopped but certainly I — there was less activity on it.
MR. ENGELMANN: And were you then tasked back to your normal duties or —
MR. DEROCHIE: Yes, I went back to shift work. I only spent two weeks — a two-week period —
MR. ENGELMANN: Okay, that’s what I wanted to ask; I’m sure the Force found something else for you to do?
MR. DEROCHIE: Yes and it wasn’t — I wasn’t given two weeks to do this; it’s just the way things worked out, I only had two weeks and then I had to go back on regular duties for — I forget what it was.
MR. ENGELMANN: All right, so after those first two weeks you were going to have to fit this assignment in with your other duties.
MR. DEROCHIE: I was going to have to finish it off, yeah. (Derochie testimony 29 February 2008)
Note that on the witness stand Derochie claims there is information relating to the Silmser re-investigation which he would have pursued only if he had decided to pursue Police Act charges against Perry:
MR. ENGELMANN: the reinvestigation or review of what the Cornwall Police Service did in the Silmser investigation, ended at or about the time of Mr. Seguin’s death?
MR. DEROCHIE: I don’t know that it ended, but it certainly stalled, it stopped.
MR. ENGELMANN: Right.
MR. DEROCHIE: As far as the active investigation. I never — I never wrote it off saying this is — now that this has happened, I will not be proceeding any further on this.
MR. ENGELMANN: But statements that you had asked of others —
MR. DEROCHIE: Yes.
MR. ENGELMANN: — and never obtained —
MR. DEROCHIE: Yes.
MR. ENGELMANN: — you never followed up?
MR. DEROCHIE: No. Those statements I would have only asked for had I decided we were going to go with a Police Act charge. I would not have — I wouldn’t have required them otherwise. So very soon in my review of Dunlop’s matters, I lost any interest in getting those statements. (Derochie testimony 29 February 2008)
It is unclear why the re-investigation came to a halt. According Derochie, the decision may have been his:
MR. DEROCHIE: … I think that may have been my own initiative just to say, well, we’d better just wait and see where this settles out. (Derochie testimony)
But Derochie tap dances on the stand as to why the internal re-investigation ground to halt with Seguin’s death:
MR. DEROCHIE: The OPP were now actively involved in a criminal allegation, and also I knew that there would be an investigation into Mr. Seguin’s death and subsequently another criminal investigation into Mr. Silmser’s involvement.
MR. ENGELMANN: But what you were doing was internal?
MR. DEROCHIE: It was an internal review, yes.
MR. ENGELMANN: CPS?
MR. DEROCHIE: Yes.
MR. ENGELMANN: That wouldn’t have precluded you from continuing?
MR. DEROCHIE: No, but it may well have brought something else to light.
MR. ENGELMANN: All right, and were you told to set it down or set is aside? (Derochie transcript 03 March 2008)
(A) How did the OPP know that Perry would or might have a copy of the Silmser victim statement. At this point the situation regarding Perry going to CAS was presumably not common knowledge. The pair were OPP NOT CPS officers.
(B) Why did the OPP think that CPS might not give them a copy of the Silmser victim statement?
(B) What precisely does a police S/Sgt. mean when he says he “ lost interest” in getting statements?
(C) Could Derochie unilaterally decide to cease the internal Silmser re-investigation? Derochie testified “I think that may have been my own initiative just to say, well, we’d better just wait and see where this settles out.” Surely he had to seek and receive approval from his superiors to make such a decision?
(D) Why would Derochie think for a moment that the OPP investigation into Ken Seguin’s death would produce anything to shed light on the manner in which the CPS handled David Silmser’s sex abuse allegations? Ditto for that matter that it might shed any further information on Perry Dunlop.
26 November 1993
(i) Derochie calls Abell to advise of Ken Seguin’s death. According to Abell’s notes during the call Derochie tells Abell the following
– “Says Silmser had been in touch with them. Said he was talking to Seguin; wanted $100,000 or he would go to the press; said he had ‘an agency working for him.’” (Abel testimony 27 October 2008)
– the relationship between Seguin and Silmser may have been “voluntary” “i.e. Silmser went back to Seguin as a result of a homosexual relationship that grew between them.” (Abel testimony 27 October 2008)
(ii) According to Derochie testimony he was told by Heidi Sebalj that there was a homosexual relationship between Silmser and Seguin:
MR. ENGELMANN: And is that getting back to what Constable Sebalj may have told you earlier?
MR. DEROCHIE: Yes, that and the notes as well that I’d — well, I can’t say that I had viewed the notes at this time, but certainly from what Mrs. — or what Ms. Sebalj told me, that was my understanding.
MR. ENGELMANN: Because you referred to an homosexual relationship that grew between them?
MR. DEROCHIE: That was my understanding of the relationship. (Derochie testimony 03 March 1998)
(A) If what Derochie says is fact, who told Sebalj that there was a homosexual relationship between Seguin and Silmser? Was it perchance Malcolm MacDonald?
Did Derochie ask her? If not, why not?
29 November 1993
(i) Perry talks to CAS staff.
According to Abel’s testimony Perry was in to talk to Greg Bell and Ms. DeBellis. Bell’s notes regarding that meet read in part:
“There are other perpetrators involved in a ring. We will be hearing about this; that this includes Malcolm MacDonald.” (Abel testimony 27 October 2008)
03 December 1993
(i) Bishop Larocque calls CAS. He seems to be concerned about the on-going CAS investigation.
According to Abel notes Larocque called Abel wanting to know how long the CAS investigation was going to take:
“Wanted to know how long we would be investigating. You told me a month.” (Abel testimony 27 October 2008) According to Able Larocque allegedly was also complaining that the CAS investigation had gone beyond St. Andrews (Abel testimony 27 October 2008)
(A) I am uncertain if there is evidence that at this point Bishop Larocque was aware of the CPS re-investigation. Did he know, for example that the CPS had been re-investigating the Silmser investigation? If yes, did he know that the re-investigation had come to a halt or a stall with the death of Ken Seguin? If Larocque knew about the CPS re-investigation was he equally concerned about it? If not, why not?
06 December 1993
(i) Derochie meets with Cornwall Crown attorney Murray MacDonald – Derochie says Murray told him that he, Murray, spoke to Perry and Lortie on 29 September 1993 and told them they could either go to Correctional Services or CAS
MR. DEROCHIE: That’s right and it was, if – if the service can’t lay a charge, maybe we could deal with the community safety concerns by going to CAS or the Ministry of Correctional Services. (Derochie testimony 03 March 2008)
During his testimony Derochie seemed to get more hung up speculating on whether Murray M did or did not know that Perry and Lortie had no official role in seeing him (Murray) than he had in the fact that the Crown attorney himself had suggested that Perry go to CAS. Derochie apparently gave this piece of information – which came from the Crown himself – no further thought.
(A) If the Crown’s word was good enough for CPS officers to justify halting the Silmser criminal investigation in September 1993, why was it not deemed good enough to justify Perry’s decision to go to CAS?
Late December 1993
(i) Charlie Greenwell CJOH contacts Abell. At this time Greenwell knows of the $32,000 pay-off.
02 January 1994
(i) Chief Claude Shaver officially retires
04 January 1994
(i) Acting Chief Carl Johnston takes the CPS reins.
(ii) It seems that in short order – on or about this date – Johnston allegedly asks Derochie to submit a report on the Perry Dunlop investigation, the investigation which had presumably been completed or put on the back burner 15 October 1993:
MR. DEROCHIE: …in early January I was contacted by Chief Johnston and he asked me to submit a report and to comment on whether or not I had uncovered any information that would cause me to recommend a remedy other than what Chief Shaver had wanted. (Dercohie testimony)
I have been unable to determine as yet when precisely Johnston asked Derochie to submit the final report. However, there may be a clue here – in Part I of his 08 January 1994 report Derochie writes, referring to himself in the third person:
“Staff Sergeant Derochie’s review of this whole matter was completed on January 5, 1994.” (Derochie’s 08 January 1994 Dunlop Report)
In other words the review was completed one day after Johnston took over. That would suggest Johnston asked that it be completed the same day he took the reins. That in turn suggests to me that Johnston had been well briefed on the matter before assuming control.
As for Derochie saying the review was “completed” 05 January 1994, I am guessing that Derochie means he completed the leg work on that date – the actual report was submitted 08 January 1994. That aside, testimony shows that a decision had been made to remedy Perry’s ‘wrong-doing’ with counseling in mid October and that as of this date the counseling had yet to be done.
Also of interest…
As mentioned earlier Derochie’s 08 January 1994 report on the Dunlop investigation reads in part:
“Staff Sergeant Derochie was further tasked with reviewing the investigation ino Mr. Silmser’s complaint of being sexually assaulted. It was determined that because Constable Dunlop’s actions were motivated by the outcome of the criminal investigation, that this second assignment should be dealt with before Constable Dunlop was disciplined.”
There is no indication that the Silmser re-investigation was touched let alone completed after the death of Ken Seguin.
(ii) According to his testimony on 04 January 1994 Derochie contacts OPP officer Randy Millar to find out how their investigation is going. (that is the investigation re Ken Seguin’s death)
Derochie agrees that this is around the same time that Johnston asks for the final report on the Dunlop investigation. According to Derochie:
He [Johnston] said his one concern was — his primary concern was, “Have you uncovered anything that would have — that would suggest to you that Perry acted in anything other than — in any way — in a way other than his concern for the community, the safety issue of the community?” And I indicated, no, I had not. And he said, “Well give me a report on — on your findings and on your — on your determination on that — that issue.” (Derochie testimony 03 March 2008)
(A) Who briefed Johnston before he took over as Chief?
(B) Who or what prompted Johnston, spanking new to the job and presumably unfamiliar with personnel, to ask Derochie if he would personally recommend a remedy for Perry other than that recommended by the retired Chief Shaver?
(C) Is it happenstance that Derochie contacted Randy Millar around the same time Johnson asked for the Dunlop report?
05 or 06 January 1994
(i) Charlie Greenwell breaks news of the $32,000 pay-off on CTV.
(There are discrepancies in the dates – in Doug Seguin’s testimony the date is 05 January, in others it is 06 January 1994. I believe however it was on 06 January 1994 that Ottawa’s CJOH-TV Charlie Greenwell broke the news that a man identified as D.S. alleged he had been sexually abused by Father Charles MacDonald and probation officer Ken Seguin. ) This is the first the public officially knows of the sex abuse allegations against Father Charlie and Ken Seguin which had initially been taken to the CPS in December of 1992.
06 January 1994
(i) It looks as though the local Cornwall radio station picks up and runs with the “D.S.” story 06 and 07 January 1994.
In short order word is seeping out that the diocese of Alexandria-Cornwall may have paid “D .S.” (David Silmser) $32,000 to drop his allegations of sex abuse against Father Charles MacDonald. (see Anatomy of a Cover-up for timelines on media reports).
(ii) Former CAS Executive Director Tom O’Brien contacts Abel re the Charlie Greenwell coverage. According to Abel O’Brien seems to have knowledge of another victim. (Abel testimony 27 October 2008)
(iii) Shaver calls Abel. Shaver is apparently upset re the media coverage. Abel testifies he doesn’t recall the gist of the conversation, however, according to Abel’s notes, Shaver is concerned that he, Shaver, has been misquoted:
“Concern media have misquoted, got facts wrong.” (Abel testimony 27 October 2008)
07 January 1994
(i) David Silmser calls Abel. According to Abel’s testimony Silmser is upset re media coverage.
MR. ENGELMANN: He wasn’t sure who had released this, whether it was the Agency, the police or someone else.
MR. ABELL: That’s right.
MR. ENGELMANN: Was that also your understanding?
MR. ABELL: Yeah. No, he was very upset, very angry and I think he didn’t know where to turn or who to trust.
MR. ENGELMANN: All right. Sir, at the bottom of the page you indicate — you asked him if he was getting any support.
MR. ABELL: Yes.
MR. ENGELMANN: “Just got angry, said he had to go. Ended the conversation.” (Abel testimony 27 October 2008)
(A) Is there any indication anywhere that David Silmser was upset that CAS knew of his allegations? I can find and know of none. He was certainly upset that his allegations showed up in the media, but he was not upset that CAS knew of his allegations.
07 January 1994
(i) Charlie Greenwell contacts Abel. Greenwell is asking questions – Abel apparently essentially refuses comment.
Abel is angry with Greenwell for previous coverage – he feels Greenwell erroneously took general comments which he, Abell, had made and applied them to the Silmser situation. (Abel testimony 27 October 2008)
(ii) At the inquiry Abel testifies that he did ask members of the Project Blue team if anyone had released information to the media and the response was ‘no.’ . He also testified that at that time he did not know that CAS staffer Pat Garrahan, not a member of the team, had a personal relationship with Charlie Greenwell. Abel said he heard about that only when he was preparing for the inquiry. (Abel 28 October 2008)
Furthermore, according to Abel’s notes CAS lawyer Elizabeth MacLennan felt that Perry or anyone reading the Silmser victim statement had a duty to report:
“Anyone reading the statement has a duty to report under the CFSA.” (Abel 28 October 2008)
(A) Did not a single soul at CAS know that Garrahan and Greenwell were an item? Obviously that is an important piece of information, particularly at the time CPS and the police Board ignore all other persons with access to or retention of the Silmser victim statement and essentially decide to scapegoat Perry as the only person who could possibly have leaked the document to the media. I would note here too that strangely enough everyone with access to the statement who was questioned – Perry included – denies leaking it to the media. For whatever reason the denials of others were accepted by CPS, but apparently not those of Perry.
08 January 1994
(i) Derochie’s Dunlop Report, dated 08 January 1994, is officially finished.
(ii) The Ottawa Citizen runs an article “Cornwall Police deny privacy violation,” which reads in part:
“An Ottawa Valley man says Cornwall Police violated his privacy and victimized him a second time by releasing his witness statement about being sexually abused. Details of the statement were publicized this week through an Ottawa television station and newspaper. The man said that his signature was noticeable in a television report that used pictures of the statement.”
“Staff Sergeant Brendan Wells, a Cornwall Police spokesman, said, ‘I’m satisfied no member of the Cornwall Police Service gave any statement to any news media’, but Wells could not explain how the statement became public, adding, ‘Cornwall Police are investigating the matter and will question involved media agencies as to how they received its statement’.”
During his testimony Wells denies that there was any CPS investigation conducted from which he could have concluded that “no member of the Cornwall Police Service gave any statement to any news media.” He suggests the media quote was inaccurate:
“ I wouldn’t make such a statement out of thin air without being able to prove it. I have not investigated any incident regarding to that date, regarding who had maybe released it to the media or any member of the Service. So I can’t see myself making that statement.”
Despite the alleged errors in the article, neither Wells nor any CPS officer contacts the Citizen to seek correction.
(iii) On an unknown date at or shortly before this time a decision is made by CPS to call in the Ottawa Police (Ottawa Carleton Regional Police Service – OCRPS) to conduct an external investigation of some sort.
What is known is that at some as yet unknown date CPS D/Chief Lyon contacts Ottawa Carleton Police Superintendent Brian Skinner by phone. Lyon is apparently acting on the directive of A/C Carl Johnson.
It seems that Lyon may have met Skinner in Ottawa and given verbal instructions. That is unclear.
It also seems that Skinner decided that OCRPS S/Sgt. William Blake would be a good assistant. Skinner asked Blake if he would assist, Blake agreed – hence the Skinner-Blake team. (As will be seen later it seems there were are other OCRPS officers involved who were not mentioned or referenced during the Skinner testimony.)
According to testimony, almost “ immediately” after the CPS contact Skinner and Blake are in Cornwall. We know that the pair are in Cornwall 10 January 1994. As much as things moved quickly I believe it would have taken a minimum of two or three days from the moment Johnston decided to go for an external OCRPS review to the 10th of January when the Skinner-Blake team arrive in Cornwall. That I believe would put the Johnston decision to call in the Ottawa police at or very shortly after media reports broke about the Silmser sex abuse allegations.
According to Leo Courville’s testimony, the decision to call in the OCRPS would have been A/C Johnston’s, and Johnston probably first contacted someone with OCRPS to see if an investigation or review or whatever could be done, and then Johnston sought and received support from the Board:
MR. COURVILLE: I think it was the Chief of Police’s call and he certainly was supported by the Board.
MR. HORN: Okay. And did you have any input prior to him making that decision?
MR. COURVILLE: … I believe the process went like this; that he had made contact with individuals within the Ottawa Police Service to determine if they would be available and willing to do that. And when that was determined, then he consulted with the Board and then he as Chief made the call to do that knowing that the Board would support that.
Courville also testified that Chief Johnston “believed it would be in the best interest of the general public and the Police Service and everybody that outside agencies be involved.”
Oddly enough, according to Courville the idea of an OPP investigation is alive even as the Ottawa police are being called in to conduct a “ review”:
MR. COURVILLE: … The possibility of the matter being reinvestigated, I think, was there even when Ottawa was charged with doing this.
And I believe that if it was to be reinvestigated then the assumption was that it would probably be reinvestigated by a service outside of Ottawa and certainly outside of Cornwall so that would necessarily involve a third agency such as the OPP.”
(iv) According to S/Sgt Garry Derochie the Ottawa police were called in to dispel talk of cover-up:
MR. DEROCHIE: Then yes, we were accused as an organization, or certainly senior members in the organizations were accused of covering it up, and to, as much as we can, to dispel that thought by some people in the community, the Chief thought it wise to bring the Ottawa Police Service in. They recommended that the whole thing be reinvestigated by the OPP, and subsequently Carl Johnston made that request of the OPP, and here we are.
(A) If indeed as Courville testified the CPS was thinking in terms of an OPP reinvestigation why the decision to call in the Ottawa police to conduct a “review”? Why not just call in the OPP to reinvestigate the Silmser investigation?
10 January 1994
( i) Skinner and Blake are on the job to conduct their external review. According to Skinner testimony:
MR. SKINNER: On the first — on our arrival in Cornwall, we met with Acting Chief Johnston, initially at first by himself, I believe, and then at some point, probably very shortly afterwards, we also met with Deputy Chief St-Denis and Staff Sergeant Lucien Brunet.
– In as much as media reports and testimony refer to OCRPS involvement I can find nothing in testimony that shows any contact by CPS with the Ottawa Chief of Police clearing the way for this “review.” It must exist but I can find nothing which confirms such contact.
(ii) According to St. Denis’ testimony prior to meeting with Skinner and Blake that morning he is advised by A/C Johnston that there is to be an internal review of the Silmser investigation AND an internal inquiry into the leak:
“At 11 o’clock, I was advised by Chief Johnston of an internal review in the criminal case and an internal inquiry in the leak. At 11:05, met with Staff Sergeant William Blake and Sergeant Brian Skinner.” (St. Denis testimony 05 June 2008)
– Interesting, S/Sgt Garry Derochie testified that Skinner did what he, Derochie was originally tasked to do, i.e., review the Silmser investigation and report on it:
MR. DEROCHIE: That’s right, but he did what I was to do; review the investigation and report on it. (Derochie 29 Feb 08)
(Remember here that Derochie’s internal investigation seemed to come to an abrupt and grinding halt after the death of Ken Seguin.)
– In as much as Derochie seems to think Skinner is doing the reinvestigation with which he, Derochie, was originally tasked, Skinner feels that his task is not to reinvestigate the investigation but simply to determine if the CPS had covered up the allegations:
MR. SKINNER: We were not going to reinvestigate those investigations from a criminal point of view, no, we were not; simply — simply to discover whether or not the Cornwall police had covered up the allegations.
– Although Derochie had already been investigating the Silmser investigation he felt Johnston didn’t want him to be involved with the Ottawa police investigation
MR. DEROCHIE: He wanted us to be at — at arm’s distance from this just to — just to put at rest these allegations that — that there was something improper going on and it wouldn’t have been proper for me to be involved at that point. (Derochie testimony 03 March 2008)
– Johnston wanting Derochie to keep at arm’s length obviously does not constitute staying out of it altogether. Derochie is assigned to essentially ‘facilitate’ for Skinner and Blake, but claims the pair was independent of him:
MR. ENGELMANN: …What was your role with these two officers —-
MR. DEROCHIE: I was — I would coordinate things for them. I would make people available, find out when they were available. Arrange meetings so that they could interview these people.
MR. ENGELMANN: So you had a facilitation-type role?
MR. DEROCHIE: That — that would well explain it, yes, or well define it.
MR. DEROCHIE: … I was their facilitator…. They were around the office periodically. Whenever they needed something they would give me a shout and I would try to facilitate whatever it was they were looking for, but other than that I wasn’t — you know they were independent of me and I think they wanted it that way and I certainly wanted it that way. Let them go and do their thing. (Derochie testimony)
(iii) According to Blake notes of that date either he or perhaps he and Skinner review files from the Dunlop internal investigation
“Reviewed notes of the files in Dunlop internal file” (Skinner testimony)
Blake also notes that he is updated by Brunet on the Silmser investigation:
“A briefing by Brunet. Up-to-date on Silmser investigation. Given documentation and case notes by Brunet” (Skinner testimony)
(iv) The OCRPS “review” is launched amidst media fanfare. One headline reads “ City police under investigation: Ottawa force probes handling of sexual assault complaint.” The public understanding is that “ Ottawa police” is conducting the review.
At a press conference Lyon says the final report of the review will be given to A/C Carl Johnston and Leo Courville (Chair of the Police Service Board). Courville suggests the findings will be released to the public.
(A) Why another CPS internal investigation/reinvestigation of the CPS Silmser investigation? What was wrong with the investigative work into the Silmser investigation started by Derochie 15 October 1993? If the job was incomplete why was Derochie not simply told to get at it and wrap it up? If it was complete why did Johnston not, as he had presumably done with regard the Dunlop “investigation,” tell Derochie to turn in the report?
(B) Does it make any sense that A/C Johnston commissioned a new internal review at the very time he called in the Ottawa police to conduct an external review and was at that very time presumably thinking in terms of calling in terms of calling the OPP to conduct a criminal investigation?
(C) What Silmser investigation does Brunet use to update Blake? Is it the Derochie reinvestigation which seemed to fall by-the-bye with the death of Ken Seguin? It seems there has been no movement on that particular investigation since 25 November 1993- and in fact St. Denis is told this very day that there will be an internal review on the Silmser complaint. Is that the update? Are the Ottawa pair told that a new review of the Silmser complaint is in fact being launched right on this very day as they launch their review?
11 January 1994
(i) Leo Courville, the chairman of the Cornwall Police service Board, issues a press release. (Note that this happens the day after the Skinner-Blake ‘review’ is officially of the ground. It is also the day after St. Denis was told by Johnston that internal reviews of the Silmser investigation and the leak were being launched by CPS.)
– The press release provides a rather biased recap of events from the time David Silmser first approached CPS in early December 1992. The press release misrepresents and/or omits pertinent facts, gives the impression that any and/or all perceived errors of omission or commission were attributable mainly to David Silmser, makes no mention of errors or omissions committed by the investigating officer Constable Heidi Sebalj, and, I would suggest, implies that errors or omissions which were not attributable to David Silmser were probably the fault of an “ uninvolved officer” (Constable Perry Dunlop). The release likewise indirectly implies that it was probably Perry who leaked the victim statement to the media 07 January 1994, and publicly invites “the complainant” (David Silmser) to pursue further action via Police Complaint procedures and the Police Services Act of Ontario.
– According to the press release, on 07 January 1994 a local Cornwall radio station received a copy of David Silmser’s victim statement, senior management of the CPS had no knowledge of the transmittal of the document and had ordered an “investigation” into the matter as well as a complete review of the sex “ assault” investigation. The investigation and review are to be conducted by “ the City of Ottawa Police Service.”
– According to the statement Summary in the Press Release: “In order to give full confidence to the complainant that any and all concerns he may still have, will be actively and impartially investigated, the Board shall seek assistance from other police agencies.” Note two operative words here: “ impartially” and “investigated.” Also note reference to “other police agencies” – that would no doubt be the Ottawa police.
– In as much as the press release presumably emanated from the Cornwall Police Service Board we know from Wells’ testimony that CPS personnel were involved in its construction in some fashion, specifically Wells and Luc Brunet.
(ii) The same day the Board issues its press release, David Silmser’s lawyer Bryce Geoffrey sends a letter to CPS re disclosure of the victims statement. The letter gives notice that damages will be claimed re the release of Silmser’s victim statement against the Cornwall Police Service Board, Carl Johnston, Constable Heidi Sebalj and “other officers under the direction of Chief Johsnton the names of whom are presently under investigation.”
(A) What prompted Courville, Wells and Brunet and whomever else was involved in crafting the press release to focus on the actions of the “uninvolved officer” Perry Dunlop?
(B) Why did Courville, Wells and Brunet and whomever else was involved in crafting the press release erroneously imply that the Dunlop investigation commenced by Derochie 07 October 1993 was ongoing?
(C) Why did Courville, Wells and Brunet and whomever else was involved in crafting the press release not advise that on 08 January 1994 Derochie had submitted the Dunlop Report?
(D) Why did Courville, Wells and Brunet and whomever else was involved in crafting the press release virtually invite David Silmser to take action against the “uninvolved officer”? Were they hoping, as appears, that legal action would be taken against Perry Dunlop? If yes, why?
(C) Since the press release focus was on Perry presumably there was reason. What proof therefore did Courville, Wells and Brunet and whomever else was involved in crafting the press release have that Constable Heidi Sebalj was above suspicion as far as leaking the Silmser statement to the media? Ditto all the other police officers known to have a copy of or to have had ready access to the David Silmser statement? Ditto all CAS personnel who had a copy or access to a copy of the statement?
The denials of those who were interviewed are equal to those of Perry. Why then the conscious and deliberate effort to scapegoat Perry as a culprit?
(D) Why did Bryce Geoffrey (Silmser’s lawyer) insert the words “other officers under the direction of Chief Johnston the names of whom are presently under investigation” in his letter? Did someone tell Geoffrey that other officers were under investigation? If yes, who, when, why and, what exactly was he told?
(F) Why did Geoffrey state in his 11 January 1994 letter that David Silmser agreed to the $32,000 payment “to avoid the adverse publicity and personal embarrassment and agony associated with a public trial”? Where did that come from? I have never ever heard David Silmser say any such thing. I believe there is sufficient evidence that Silmser wanted to see Father Charles MacDonald charged and that he, Silmser, while perhaps not anxious to do so was ready, willing and able to endure a public trial. I believe there is also sufficient evidence from Silmser that he agreed to the pay-off only after he was told that Father Charles would not be charged and felt that the pay-off was therefore as close as he would come to seeing some semblance of justice.