HALIFAX — Some key findings in a report into the Crown and RCMP's handling of the Rehtaeh Parsons case:
— A police investigator was given incorrect information when told by a Crown prosecutor that child pornography offences could not be prosecuted because there was no way to determine from a photo that the persons involved were underage. The report says the advice "reflected a misunderstanding of the law as it relates to child pornography."
— Murray Segal says the investigation of the sexual assault allegations was thorough but took too long. His report says the investigation into Parsons' allegations of sexual assault took close to a year to conclude and during that time she changed schools twice and was hospitalized for weeks following renewed thoughts of suicide. "In the end, she did not receive the support and assistance a young person in crisis required," the report says.
— The report also says the investigation by the sexual assault unit included some errors and took too long for reasons that were sometimes outside the investigator's control.
— The report says Parsons gave a lengthy unrecorded statement to a police officer before the case was handed to an investigator from the sexual assault unit, which did not follow proper protocol. The report says because of Parsons' age, she should have been interviewed only once, alongside a social worker from the Department of Community Services.
— Parsons was also interviewed at length by a police officer in the presence of her mother. The report says the two should have been interviewed separately.
— Two separate interviews "would have had an avoidable negative impact on Rehtaeh; it also had a negative impact on the case because the initial statement was not obtained in conditions conducive to optimal reliability," the report says.
The Canadian Press