UPDATED: Former political candidate known for crazy video is acquitted of sexual assault charge

Wyatt Scott of Mission had been accused of inappropriately touching a female employee

Former Mission political candidate Wyatt Scott was acquitted of a sexual assault charge Wednesday in Abbotsford provincial court.

The judge indicated in his ruling that it had not been proven that Scott had acted without the complainant’s consent or without believing there was consent.

The trial for Scott, who made headlines for an outlandish video during the 2015 federal election campaign, began Monday, when the complainant – a former employee of Scott’s – testified that he made unwanted sexual advances to her that included rubbing his body against hers and making suggestive comments.

But Scott’s lawyer, in cross-examining the complainant, painted a picture of a mutually flirtatious relationship in which Scott felt the complainant was open to his advances.

Scott, 40, was charged in March 2016 with one count of sexual assault, allegedly occurring between November 2014 and April 2015 at the Mission rock-and-gem business he and his wife own.

Scott is best known for releasing a YouTube video in 2015, when he was running as an independent federal election candidate in the Mission-Matsqui-Fraser Canyon riding won by Jati Sidhu.

The video depicted Scott riding a Canada goose, slaying a dragon, fist-bumping an alien and shooting laser beams out of his eyes.

His former employee, whose name is protected under a publication ban, testified that she began working for Scott in November 2014, when she was 20 years old, and they developed a friendly working relationship over the next few months.

But she said she became increasingly uncomfortable with his behaviour.

“It started out with just comments being made that, to me, were inappropriate,” she said.

For example, she said if she wanted to purchase a store product and asked Scott how much it was, he would reply, “Just two minutes of your time.”

On another occasion, she said Scott showed her a picture on his phone that was apparently of a note from his wife, giving him permission to have a mistress.

The woman said the behaviour escalated to physical touching. She said if she was working at the front counter, Scott would walk behind her and press up against her, even though there was room for him to get by without touching her.

On another occasion, she said Scott called her into the back room and asked her to sit down. He then pulled her chair towards him so her knee was between his legs.

In the final incident, the woman was leaning up against a desk when she said Scott approached her, took her hands in his, stretched her arms out and pressed his body against hers.

She said she pushed her hands away from him and wiggled free.

The woman said she then told Scott’s wife about the incident, and she was fired. She then filed a police report in July 2015.

In cross-examining the woman, defence lawyer Alexis Falk asked her about whether she remembered specific incidents in which she hugged Scott, massaged his shoulders, kissed him on the cheek, slapped him on his bottom, and jumped on him and wrapped her arms and legs around him.

The complainant often replied that she didn’t remember specific incidents, but that she and her co-workers often exhibited those behaviours with one another.

“We were all a huggy bunch,” she said.

Falk also suggested during her questioning that the woman was fired not because she told Scott’s wife about the alleged incidents, but because the shop was struggling financially. Two others were fired the same day, Falk pointed out.

Falk also suggested that the woman often flirted with Scott, but she denied the claim.

“I’m a very happy, friendly person. It all depends on how someone else sees it,” she said.

NOTE: Due to an incorrect notation in court records, an earlier version of this story incorrectly stated that charges had been dismissed against Wyatt Scott, rather than that he had been acquitted. Although the outcome is the same, a dismissal generally comes before the start or end of a trial, while an acquittal comes after the trial has concluded.

Just Posted

Hundreds vote in advance polls in Summerland

General voting in municipal election scheduled for Oct. 20, 8 a.m.t o 8 p.m.

Contenders to return for Okanagan tour

Valdy, Gary Fjellgaard and Blu and Kelly Hopkins will perform at six venues

LETTER: Examine past record when voting

Summerland mayoral candidate Toni Boot approaches each issue in a fair and open minded manner

Junior B hockey team will travel to Spokane and Beaver Valley

The Summerland Steam Junior B hockey team will be on the road… Continue reading

Okanagan clinical team to research Alzheimer’s Disease drug

Disease-modifying medication study seeks participants

Singer k.d. lang receives Alberta’s highest honour

Celebrated singer-songwriter k.d. lang received the Alberta Order of Excellence in Edmonton

VOTE: Nature in Focus reader’s choice photo contest

The Penticton Western News Reader’s Choice photo contest

Who is running in Summerland’s election?

Introducing you to the candidates asking for your vote on Oct. 20

Colourfully named cannabis products appeal to youth, Tory health critic says

Conservative health critic Marilyn Gladu says the Liberal government needs to do more to ensure cannabis products available online are not enticing to young people

Trial set for man charged with decades-old murder of B.C. girl

Garry Handlen accused of killing Merritt girl; also charged with Abbotsford murder

Bernardo-like sexual deviancy poorly understood, expert says

What exactly causes such deviance is not known but some evidence exists of physical brain damage to the front part of the brain

B.C. high school teacher faces sexual assault charges

A Mt. Boucherie teacher has been charged with child luring, sexual exploitation and sexual assault.

Fashion Fridays: You can never have enough shoes

Kim XO, lets you know the best online shopping tips during Fashion Fridays on the Black Press Media Network

Former B.C. cop sentenced to jail ‘in the community’ after caught in Creep Catchers sting

Dario Devic pleaded guilty after getting caught up in Surrey Creep Catcher sting in Whalley in 2016

Most Read