CBC News Posted: Aug 1, 2013
In a claim filed today in B.C. Supreme Court, Atoya Montague alleges Insp. Tim Shields abused his position of authority over her to commit acts of sexual assault.
The governments of British Columbia and Canada are also named in the lawsuit.
Montague held a senior civilian position within the RCMP’s B.C. communications division, where she worked with Shields.
She alleges that in 2003 while driving to the B.C. Interior with Shields he made unwanted sexual advances toward her.
“While driving and in control of the vehicle, the defendant Shields, showed the plaintiff his erection through his jean shorts and made sexual advances towards the plaintiff, asking the plaintiff to have sex with him and advising her that he could easily pull over the car so that he could perform oral sex on her,” the lawsuit alleges.
Montague also claims Shields exposed himself to her in 2008 during a similar incident in a police car.
“On this occasion he showed the plaintiff his penis,” the lawsuit alleges.
Left ‘terrified’ by encounter
In her notice of civil claim, Montague says the tone of sexual harassment within the RCMP began even before she formally started work.
She claims one staff sergeant told another member “there would be a lineup” of men out the door once she began work.
She also alleges that several other senior officers made sexual comments and jokes toward her during her time with the force.
In one incident Montague alleges she was surrounded by the male members of the police dog unit rubbing up against her, leaving her “terrified, literally running away from that encounter,” the lawsuit alleges.
Montague says she did not report the incidents at the time for fear of the negative repercussion it would have on her career.
The lawsuit says Montague worked for the RCMP from 2002 until 2011, when she went on sick leave and was diagnosed with post-traumatic stress disorder in 2012.
She also alleges the RCMP’s health services has since harassed her about her condition and threatened to cut off her medical leave and pay.
None of the allegations have been proven in court.