Eastern Ontario mayor facing sex crime charges to take unpaid leave

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Frank Prevost will be taking six months of unpaid leave from his position as mayor  of South Glengarry, Ont., after he was charged this week with three counts of child luring and one count of sexual assault. (United Counties of Stormont, Dundas and Glengarry - image credit)
Frank Prevost will be taking six months of unpaid leave from his position as mayor of South Glengarry, Ont., after he was charged this week with three counts of child luring and one count of sexual assault. (United Counties of Stormont, Dundas and Glengarry - image credit)

The mayor of South Glengarry, Ont., will be taking six months of unpaid leave after being charged with three counts of child luring and one count of sexual assault.

Township council approved Frank Prevost's request to take time off at an emergency meeting Friday.

Prevost, 53, was arrested Tuesday following an undercover investigation involving the Ontario Provincial Police's child sexual exploitation unit and local detachments.

In a statement Friday, South Glengarry Township noted that the powers set out in Ontario's Municipal Act did not grant them the right to demand Prevost's resignation outright or to remove a sitting council member from office.

However, Prevost asked for the leave of absence, which council unanimously approved in order to "allow the day-to-day operations of the township to remain the focus."

"Understandably, the nature of these charges against Mayor Prevost may cause significant upset to members of the community and staff," the statement said.

"We remind those who are distressed that there are community resources available to you."

No longer warden

Prevost had also been serving as the warden of the United Counties of Stormont, Dundas and Glengarry, but that title was also revoked on Friday.

In its own statement, the united counties council said Prevost's leave of absence meant he could not continue in that role.

"At a future meeting, council will determine how to best fill the role of warden for the balance of 2021," the statement said.

South Glengarry township is roughly 100 kilometres southeast of downtown Ottawa.

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