Ottawa police officer convicted of assault, then charged with sexual harassment, has resigned

·2 min read
Carl Keenan became an Ottawa police officer in 2009. He recently resigned while facing nine counts of misconduct under the Police Services Act. (Muse Entertainment/YouTube - image credit)
Carl Keenan became an Ottawa police officer in 2009. He recently resigned while facing nine counts of misconduct under the Police Services Act. (Muse Entertainment/YouTube - image credit)

An Ottawa police constable who had been suspended with pay for three and a half years, criminally convicted of assaulting a former girlfriend, and facing nine disciplinary charges has resigned from the force.

Const. Carl Keenan was first suspended by the Ottawa Police Service (OPS) in December 2017 after he was criminally charged with assaulting a former girlfriend in Quebec. That suspension ended on July 20 of this year when Keenan formally resigned from the service, according to police workforce documents set to be received by the police board on Monday.

Keenan was found guilty of assault causing bodily harm in July 2020 and was given a conditional discharge in October of that year, which means he wouldn't have a criminal record if he observes the conditions of his discharge. He was also sentenced to two years of probation.

His police disciplinary hearing could not begin until his criminal case was concluded.

Misconduct charges dated back to 2016

Keenan was charged with three counts of insubordination, five counts of discreditable conduct and one count of breach of confidence under the Police Services Act, the legislation that governs cops in Ontario.

Those charges related to allegations that spanned from 2016 to 2020, and included Keenan allegedly sexually harassing a female recruit he was assigned to mentor.

In November 2016, Keenan was the rookie colleague's coach officer. Police alleged he sexually harassed her until February 2017.

Ottawa police also alleged for a two-year period from 2015 to the end of 2017, Keenan accessed the police database and would send "sensitive and confidential information" to his personal email address.

Keenan was also charged with "yelling and aggressively pushing" someone out of a car in the parking lot of the police station at Greenbank Road sometime between October 2015 and 2016.

Fired service weapon

Internal investigators also found evidence he not only fired his police gun while off duty in September 2017, and at a location that wasn't approved by the service, but he also turned his gun over to a child and a civilian to do the same in an open field, according to the charges laid against him.

Just two weeks before he was criminally charged by MRC des Collines police for the assault on his former girlfriend, Ottawa police alleged Keenan, while on duty, recorded the behaviour of a person apprehended under the Mental Health Act on his personal phone and then shared that video "with an inappropriate comment" with a civilian.

The officer was also facing disciplinary action for the criminal assault conviction. He resigned before entering a plea to any of the misconduct charges against him.

Keenan is a former military police officer who joined Ottawa police in 2009. He was in the Canadian Armed Forces from 2005 to 2007.

Including Keenan, two Ottawa police officers have now resigned in 2021 before facing their disciplinary hearings.

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