Snowbirds pilot charged with sexual assault after alleged incident in Barrie

The pilot flew lead solo on the 9 Jet for the nine-aircraft team

Files from Barrie 360

A Snowbirds pilot has been charged with sexual assault after an alleged incident in Barrie last week. 

The Canadian Forces Provost Marshal’s office says it began an investigation last Wednesday.

Military police laid the charge on Saturday, but a spokesperson said it was not able to be certified in a civilian court until Monday. 

The military said the case will be handled in the civilian justice system.

The referral of such cases is part of its effort to address the recommendations from last year’s report by former Supreme Court justice Louise Arbour. 

Arbour called on the federal government to ensure the military did not have jurisdiction over sexual assault cases, after a series of sexual misconduct scandals involving high-ranking officers. 

The military said last month that it had referred 93 cases of criminal sexual offences to civilian police since December 2021, and 64 of those cases were under investigation.

Another 97 cases reported to the military police were not passed along to another force, it said.

A media advisory from the Commanders of 1 and 2 Canadian Air Divisions on Saturday made no mention of charges and did not name the individual involved. 

Officials said on the weekend that the person affected by the allegation was another member of the military.

The pilot who has been charged flew lead solo on the 9 Jet for the nine-aircraft team. 

The Snowbirds were part of the Barrie Air Show, which took place on June 10 and 11.

One of the Snowbirds aircraft was piloted by Captain Marc-Andre Plante, who flew on the 8 jet and has roots in Barrie.

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