A Central Okanagan RCMP officer has been charged with sexual assault and has been suspended with pay.
Chad Lincoln Vance, 49, was an officer with the RCMP’s Southeast District General Investigation Section prior to the charge.
While the circumstances leading to the charge are unclear, Vance is alleged to have committed the sexual assault against a Kelowna resident sometime in July 2015.
“Cst. Vance is currently suspended with pay and his duty status is subject to continual review and assessment. Internal code of conduct processes have been initiated and are currently underway,” said Staff-Sgt. Janelle Shoihet of the BC RCMP.
“Prior to his suspension Cst. Vance was posted to the Southeast District General Investigation Section, not the Kelowna Detachment.”
Vance has elected to be tried by a provincial court judge but trial dates have yet to be set.
He is scheduled to appear in court on Jan. 23, 2020 for a pre-trial conference.
Charges against Vance come less then a week after a Kelowna RCMP officer was placed under investigation for allegedly sending sexually explicit text messages to a victim in a case he was investigating.
Another Kelowna RCMP officer, Brian Mathew Burkett, was charged in July with seven counts of breach of trust after allegedly attempting to pursue relationships and requesting lewd photos from victims.
The entire Kelowna RCMP detachment came under fire in October after a story published by Kelowna Capital News revealed nearly 40 per cent of reported sexual assault cases were deemed unfounded in 2018.
That number is more than double the 15 per cent average across the province and dwarfs the under five per cent averages in Vancouver and Victoria.
In November the Kelowna RCMP said it could not provide an explanation as to why so many cases were deemed unfounded, however the national office said its Sexual Assault Review Team would investigate.