Ottawa police officer pleads guilty to filming, mocking vulnerable people in custody

An Ottawa police officer who mocked people with mental illness who were in his custody then circulated videos and photographs via text with other officers, has pleaded guilty to 10 counts of misconduct.

Const. Jesse Hewitt pleaded guilty Monday morning to nine counts of discreditable conduct and one count of unlawful or unnecessary exercise of authority under the Police Services Act. The final charge is for kicking down a door and illegally arresting a woman.

The guilty pleas come more than a year after serious allegations of misconduct began to publicly surface against Hewitt.

Hewitt was charged with recording six women and photographing one man "for unauthorized purposes," all of whom were in police custody at the time. At the time of the recordings, two of the women had been apprehended under the Mental Health Act.

Hewitt made the videos that are known to misconduct investigators from December 2018 to June 2019, and took the photograph of the man in September 2019. In that time he distributed the photograph and videos to other police officers "in order to ridicule subjects involved."

During a teleconference appearance Monday, Hewitt responded, "Guilty, sir," to each of the 10 counts on which he was arraigned.


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