Charlottetown man pleads guilty to sex crimes committed more than 20 years ago

Crown seeks 4 to 5 years in decades-old sex crime

Philip Alexander Whittaker, 60, of Charlottetown, pleaded guilty Thursday to two charges of sexually abusing a teenage girl in the 1990s.

Whittaker pleaded guilty to one charge of sexual interference in 1991 and one charge of sexual assault in 1993.

The victim was 13 at the time of the first offence.

The victim spoke to CBC after the sentencing. CBC is not naming her or a friend she asked to speak on her behalf in order to protect the victim's identify.

The victim said Whittaker was the father of one of her friends at the time.

Suffered in silence for years

She said she suffered in silence for years after the abuse, only telling family and close friends what happened.

Her best friend went with her to the police station to report the abuse last summer, when the victim decided it was time to report Whittaker.

"She opened the paper one day, and there he was on the front page of the paper, working with children and working with families, and she decided then and there she couldn't with a good conscience allow him to be doing that in the community," said her friend.

Sentencing offers closure

Whittaker was charged last fall with 11 sex-related crimes. After pleading guilty to two charges Thursday, the other nine charges were stayed.

The guilty pleas give the victim some closure, her friend told CBC.

"All she wanted from this really was accountability on Mr. Whittaker's part." 

'She's the bravest woman I know'

"It is giving her some closure, and she's showing other women in the community that it's never too late to go ahead and make a report, and hold somebody accountable for their actions. "

"I just want to say that she's the bravest woman I know."

Whittaker is scheduled to be sentenced May 3.

In the meantime, he'll continue to be under court orders to stay away from anyone under the age of 16.

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