Death of N.S. rape accused raises concerns for woman who sought probe of cop conduct

·1 min read

HALIFAX — The killing of a man accused of raping a Halifax woman has led to concerns from her lawyer that evidence relevant to her complaint of police misconduct might have been lost.

The medical examiner's office determined the death on Saturday of 35-year-old Alexander Thomas in Dartmouth, N.S., was a homicide.

Thomas had been charged with the sexual assault and forcible confinement of Carrie Low, who this year had a publication ban on her name in relation to the case lifted.

Low has said she wants to expose what she says was misconduct by Halifax regional police and RCMP in the investigation of her alleged sexual assault.

Low says she was driven to a site outside Halifax and raped in 2018, and in a complaint to the Office of the Police Complaints Commissioner, she alleges officers failed to promptly visit the scene or have her clothing and blood tests processed in a timely manner.

Emma Halpern, a lawyer with the Elizabeth Fry Society who has represented Low, says she had hoped to hear evidence about police conduct in the case at a pretrial hearing this week and to later hear from Thomas himself if he chose to testify in his defence.

Halpern said in a news release Sunday that Low was shaken by news that Thomas had died.

"Her sympathies go out to his family and community. She is also concerned about the impact this may have on her quest for justice in her case," the statement said.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Nov. 15, 2021.

The Canadian Press

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