Young teen testifies against former coach accused of voyeurism
A young teen testified in a New Westminster court that he had no idea his former coach was taking photos of him in a change room.
The boy took the stand Tuesday at the trial of Randy Downes, who's accused of voyeurism.
For decades, Downes coached young baseball and hockey players in Metro Vancouver.
The teen, whose identity is protected by a publication ban, told the courtroom Downes coached him between the ages of 10 and 12.
Photos displayed in court Tuesday showed a boy changing – at times just in his underwear.
From behind a privacy screen, he testified that photos in a book shown to him by the Crown were of him changing in a dressing room before and after hockey practice.
After each photo, the Crown asked whether the boy knew the picture was being taken and whether he'd agreed to it. Each time, his response was no.
The allegations have Downes "extremely upset," his defence lawyer says.
Glen Orris said Downes was a sports photographer as well as a coach. Orris said of the thousands of sport-related images, there were around 30 in a dressing room setting.
"And I understand the Crown's theory here that that constitutes as voyeurism. My position is that's not the case," Orris said.
When asked what the purpose would be of taking a photo of a young athlete in various stages of undress in a change room, he replied: "Photographs are taken in dressing rooms at all times of athletes. We're not dealing here with, like I said, nudity, at all."
The boy's mother also testified in the trial, saying she remembered seeing Downes with his phone in the dressing room, and that he'd said something about not being able to get it to work properly.
On Monday, a border services officer told the court Downes was selected for a secondary inspection at the Abbotsford-Huntingdon crossing in April of 2016.
According to the testimony, he told the officer he had been to Bellis Fair mall and visited several stores, but only made a single purchase—something the officer told the court he wanted to verify.
The officer testified that he went looking for evidence of other receipts on Downes's cellphone when he came across several picture of a child inside a store taken from behind.
He said a laptop, memory cards and flash drives were found in Downes's car during the stop, and testified some appeared to show children inside locker rooms.
A report was submitted and referred to the RCMP, who conducted a search warrant at Downes's Coquitlam home a month later and said they seized a large quantity of digital storage equipment.
The defence won't say whether Downes will testify in the trial.
With a report from CTV Vancouver's Maria Weisgarber