Saturday, October 14, 2017

Appeal court ruling upholding ex-London teacher's voyeurism acquittal sparks outrage

“Open season” has been declared on women’s breasts, advocates say, to be secretly filmed and photographed in public spaces legally after a surprising ruling from Ontario’s highest court in the voyeurism case of an ex-London high school teacher.

“It’s just absolutely mind-blowing, shocking and outrageous,” said Barbara MacQuarrie, community director for the Centre for Research and Education on Violence against Women and Children at Western University, reacting to a split decision from the Ontario Court of Appeal that upheld the acquittal of former H.B. Beal teacher Ryan Jarvis.

The majority decision ruled that students had no reasonable expectation of privacy in the public areas of schools, making Jarvis’s secretly record sexually driven videos legal under the voyeurism law.

“How can we have a law that doesn’t see the wrongness of not allowing women to sit, stand, be in public spaces without the danger of being recorded?” MacQuarrie said.

“It’s open season on women’s breasts.”

Jarvis, 41, was acquitted almost two years ago of voyeurism in London. The appeal was triggered after Superior Court Justice Andrew Goodman wasn’t entirely convinced that secret pen-camera videos of 27 female students were for a sexual purpose.

The videos were taken by Jarvis as he stood near students in the school’s hallways, cafeteria, classrooms and at track and field practice. About a dozen of the videos showed teenage breasts and cleavage, while the rest caught faces and upper bodies. The students were clothed.  (more...)


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