A teenage girl victim of sexual abuse committed by a firefighter in Montérégie is outraged that her attacker kept his job for more than three months after admitting his guilt, especially since he had been arrested in the middle of a fire station.
“It annoys me, it’s a criminal act that I experienced. He assaulted me. It no longer has its place there, ”launched with aplomb the victim of Sébastien Perreault, whose identity can not be revealed by order of the court.
On December 14, the 36-year-old firefighter pleaded guilty to one count of sexual interference on a teenager under 16, at the Saint-Hyacinthe courthouse.
According to the summary of the facts presented to the court, Perreault, an acquaintance of the victim’s mother, engaged in multiple episodes of touching.
The latter also had a full relationship with the girl on her 14th birthday. A few hours later, she threw up her birthday cake.
Even if he recognized certain gestures, “the accused tends to attribute to the victim an initiative of several gestures of a sexual nature and to put the fault on the latter”, underlined to the judge the Crown prosecutor Me Claudie Gilbert. .
Arrested at the barracks
The resident of Mont-Saint-Hilaire was a firefighter at the Régie intermunicipale de sécuritéendie de la Vallée-du-Richelieu (RISIVR), which covers several municipal fire stations, since its creation in 2019. He was previously employed by the municipality of McMasterville, since 2012.
In January 2020, he was picked up at his workplace by the police, then charged and released under conditions. Perreault, however, was never subsequently suspended.
“We are launching an internal investigation quickly to take the necessary actions,” said Pierre-Damien Arel, director of the RISIVR, when contacted by Le Journal two weeks ago.
The latter assured that he ignored the accusations against his firefighter.
Sébastien Perreault subsequently submitted his official resignation on March 30.
Nevertheless, employees of the Régie told the Journal that they felt a certain unease with the presence of the accused in the various barracks in the region since his recognition of the facts.
Especially since firefighters may be called upon to intervene in public places where children may be, such as daycare services or schools.
“He could still be in contact with young people. I find it boring that the management had not made an adequate investigation, “laments the young victim, now 17 years old.
His parents consider the situation “unacceptable”. They are asking for “a little justice”.
“I will try to understand why this information did not reach my level faster. I am very concerned about the image it projects, admitted Pierre-Damien Arel. The Régie may have a mea culpa to do. ”
Perreault will return to court in June.
– with the collaboration of Claudia Berthiaume