Lutsel K’e man found not guilty of alleged 2017 sexual assault

Yellowknife Courthouse (CKLB File photo).

A jury has found a Lutsel K’e man not guilty of sexual assault after a three-day trial in Yellowknife.

The jury, made up of seven women and five men, took less than two hours to acquit Paul Catholique, 43, on Wednesday.

This was actually his second trial following the alleged incident in August of 2017 in Lutsel K’e.

A mistrial was declared last September following the first trial after a jury failed to reach a unanimous verdict.

Catholique testified on Tuesday after the alleged victim who gave her evidence from behind a screen that allows him to see her but prevents her from having to look at him.

The victim’s identity is protected by a publication ban.

Defence lawyer Paul Falvo says the trial boiled down to whether the jury believed Catholique had consent from the woman to have sex with her.

He adds that alcohol and intoxication levels for both the accused and the woman were also factors.

About the Author

John McFadden
John has been in the broadcast journalism industry since the 1980s. He has been a reporter in Yellowknife since 2012 and joined CKLB in January of 2018. John covers the crime and court beat as well as reporting on other areas including politics, business, entertainment and sports. He won seven national community newspaper awards while he was a journalist with Northern News Services Limited (NNSL). John worked in Ontario before coming North including stints as a TV sportscaster in Peterborough and senior news writer for CBC and CTV in downtown Toronto.