British sailor accused of sexual assault in hospital, delaying trial
Simon Radford, a British sailor charged with sexual assault causing bodily harm, walks outside the court room in Nova Scotia Supreme Court in Halifax on Wednesday, Sept. 5, 2018. (THE CANADIAN PRESS/Andrew Vaughan)
HALIFAX -- A British sailor on trial for allegedly sexually assaulting a Halifax woman has been hospitalized, delaying proceedings in Nova Scotia Supreme Court yet again.
Darren Smalley and Simon Radford are charged with sexual assault causing bodily harm and participating in a sexual assault involving one or more people in the Warrior Block accommodations at CFB Shearwater in April 2015.
The trial was scheduled to continue Friday, but Radford's lawyer David Bright informed Justice Patrick Duncan that his client was in hospital.
"He's anticipating a surgery -- today, tomorrow -- it depends entirely on the medical people," said Bright.
"Following that, there will be an in-house requirement for antibiotics and that sort of thing. The concern, I guess, is septicemia of the wound and they're being very, very cautious."
Bright added: "He's anxious to get back and get underway."
The case was adjourned until Monday. It's not clear yet whether Radford will be well enough to continue at that time.
The commencement of the trial had been delayed on Tuesday because Radford was in hospital. Bright had told the court his client was injured in the United Kingdom and suffered a torn artery.
The trial has only heard from one witness, a military police officer who investigated the alleged incident.
Sgt. Tyler Bruce-Hayes told the court Thursday that a number of electronic devices were seized from the barracks after a search warrant was obtained.
Bruce-Hayes said videos and photos were extracted from those devices. He identified Radford, 34, as the man in one short video clip that was played in court.
"A male has no clothes on lying on his stomach on the bed being massaged by Mr. Radford," said Bruce-Hayes when asked to describe what was happening in the clip.
Laughter can be heard throughout the video, as an unidentified naked man is shown being massaged on the back of his legs before the camera moves in close to the man's buttocks.
Smalley, 38, appeared unable to hold back laughter as the video was played loudly on multiple monitors in the courtroom.
Bruce-Hayes did not elaborate on how or if the video relates to the alleged sexual assault.
The court also saw video surveillance of a beer store drive-thru from 11:55 p.m. on April 9, 2015, showing an attendant putting several cases of beer in the trunk of a white van.
Bruce-Hayes said the complainant and a friend who was with her that night had both told him during their interviews that they rode in a white minivan to pick up beer.
Also Thursday, the sergeant reviewed a number of photos of items that were seized as part of the investigation, including photos showing a bra and underwear the complainant was wearing during the alleged sexual assault.
He identified photos of biological samples that were taken during an examination of the woman by a nurse at a Halifax hospital in the early hours of April 11, 2015.
Bruce-Hayes told the court Wednesday that he interviewed the complainant -- whose identity is protected by a publication ban -- for about two hours following the examination, and that she appeared upset.
The accused, members of the Royal Navy, were participating in a naval hockey tournament in Halifax at the time of the alleged sexual assault.
The complainant is expected to testify at the judge-alone trial, which will last roughly six weeks.
Crown lawyer Eric Taylor has said he will call about 12 witnesses.
Both Smalley and Radford are not in custody, but are under strict bail conditions.
The Crown had originally charged four men, but charges against two of the sailors were dropped.