Vancouver police officer charged with sex crimes
Published Thursday, December 29, 2016 3:05PM PST Last Updated Friday, December 30, 2016 1:43PM PST
A veteran officer of the Vancouver Police Department has been charged with several sexual offences, the force revealed Thursday.
Three counts of sexual exploitation and one count of sexual assault have been approved against Det. Const. James Fisher, authorities announced at a news conference.
Chief Adam Palmer said there are two alleged victims, one adult and one minor, but that there's little more he can reveal about the case.
"The details I can share with you today are limited as a publication ban is in place and the matter is now before the courts," Palmer said.
Fisher has also been charged with breach of trust and attempting to obstruct justice.
The officer was a gang expert with the Criminal Intelligence Service of Canada before joining the VPD's Counter-Exploitation Unit, where he dealt with victims of sex crimes.
Palmer said police would be working with Crown counsel to look back on the cases he was involved with and see “if there are any issues of concern.”
The investigation into Fisher began in March, and was triggered by information brought forward by another police officer.
"As you know, it is rare for a VPD officer to be charged with an offence such as these and it is not reflective of the other members of our department," Palmer said.
The case was investigated internally at the VPD, though Palmer said the RCMP provided assistance and B.C.'s Office of the Police Complaints Commissioner was notified immediately after the allegations came to light.
No aspect of the case involved members of the Creep Catchers online vigilante group, he added.
Fisher was kept on active duty until Wednesday, when he was arrested. Police said protocols were put in place to ensure no one was potentially put at risk.
"It was necessary to keep him on active duty as the investigation unfolded to gather evidence," Palmer said.
Fisher, who has since been suspended, appeared in Surrey provincial court Thursday morning, and is scheduled to appear again on Jan. 24.