08/20/2013 03:10 EDT | Updated 10/20/2013 05:12 EDT

Nunavut Mountie being tried on sex assault charge

A woman told a Nunavut courtroom Tuesday she was sexually assaulted by an RCMP officer in a cell at the Baker Lake detachment in 2010.

Const. Justin Dickens has pleaded not guilty to a charge of sexual assault and is being tried by judge alone in an Iqaluit court.

He was arrested in Whale Cove, Nunavut, in April 2012 and is currently suspended with pay.

Crown prosecutor Eric Marcoux called two witnesses Tuesday morning. There is a publication ban on information that would identify either witness.

The first witness was the woman who has accused Dickens of assault.

She said Dickens arrested her in the afternoon outside the Baker Lake Northern Store, two hours after she had been released from the drunk tank.

She alleges he was rough with her, so she started cursing and yelling at him.

He put her in handcuffs, took her to the Baker Lake RCMP detachment and to a cell. She alleges that's where the sexual assault occurred.

She began to cry while testifying as she told the court Dickens started to touch her vagina and buttocks with one hand while she was lying on the floor of the cell.

She said Dickens was holding down her hands with his other hand.

The witness looked at Dickens during her testimony and said, "It's not right what you did."

The witness has a criminal record and said she had been searched by police before, but not the way Dickens performed a search.

She said she did not report the incident to police. She left Baker Lake a month after the alleged incident occurred because she said she didn't feel safe.

The second witness testified about seeing Dickens in the cell with the alleged victim, holding her hands above her head with his left hand while his right hand was down the front of the woman's pants.

The second witness reported the incident to police in 2012, saying she was afraid to come forward earlier.

The trial resumes this afternoon with a cross-examination of one of the witnesses.