Accused Rapist Facing Six More Sex Assault Charges After Controversial Acquittals

In June, a judge found Paul Batchelor not guilty of raping a woman, in part because the alleged victim was too “combative” on the stand.
Manisha Krishnan
Toronto, CA
November 20, 2019, 5:39pm
Ottawa accused rapist Paul Batchelor
Paul Batchelor is accused of sexually assaulting at least six women. Photo via LinkedIn

Update: This post has been updated to reflect an additional three sexual assault charges against Batchelor by Gatineau police. Batchelor is currently facing nine charges of sexual assault against nine different women.

An Ottawa man who was acquitted of sexually assaulting two women in June is now accused of sexually assaulting six additional women—and police believe there are more victims.

Paul Batchelor, 34, a former insurance salesman for TD, was charged with three counts of sexual assault involving three women in Ottawa on Tuesday. According to Ottawa police, Batchelor sexually assaulted the women between 2009-2016 after meeting them on social media sites or at events. According to the Ottawa Citizen, he was also charged with three counts of sexual assault by Gatineau police this week.

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The new charges come as Batchelor is already awaiting three sexual assault trials slated for 2020.

That means he’s accused of sexually assaulting at least nine women, not including the two complainants from the previous trials.

Batchelor’s June acquittals sparked anger, with some criticizing the trial judge for leaning into rape myths.

According to the Ottawa Citizen, both women testified that Batchelor violently sexually assaulted them at his Sandy Hill apartment. But Ontario Superior Court Justice Robert Beaudoin ultimately accepted Batchelor’s version of events over those of his alleged victims. Crown attorneys have appealed both verdicts.

One of the complainants testified that Batchelor anally raped her, bit and slapped her when she went back to his apartment after a date. She said she’d met him online.

The woman said back at his Sandy Hill apartment, he became aggressive, demanding oral sex and then anally raping her as she screamed for him to stop.

Judge Beaudoin said the complainant’s “combative and argumentative” nature in court made it hard for him believe that she was raped, according to the Citizen.

“Given her combative answers on the stand, her statements that she suddenly became this intimidated person, are not reliable,” Beaudoin said. He also cast doubt on her testimony that she screamed during the alleged rape.

“Curiously, no one seems to have heard her cries,” Beaudoin said, noting he had a hard time accepting that Batchelor would continue sexually assaulting someone knowing “her very loud screams could be heard.”

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The second complainant who testified in June said Batchelor forced oral sex on her in May 2015, when they were both students at the University of Ottawa.

She said they went back to his apartment after meeting in a study room, according to the Citizen, and that he began kissing her. She alleged that she told him she wasn’t there to hook up, but that he bit and sucked her right breast, and pushed her down, forcing oral sex on her.

She testified that she fought him off by kicking him in the chest and running out of his apartment.

However, Judge Beaudoin questioned her credibility because both her friend and Batchelor contradicted her memory of the timing of the alleged assault. The complainant had remembered it taking place an hour later than when her friend and Batchelor said it took place.

Beaudoin accepted Batchelor’s testimony that the sex was consensual, noting “consent can be given without a word being spoken.” According to the Canadian criminal code, a person must affirmatively communicate consent through words or conduct in order for sexual activity to be lawful. Silence is not consent.

The Citizen reports that Batchelor had a big smile on his face when he left the courthouse a free man in June.

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