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Content warning: This article contains subject matter regarding sexual assault that may be disturbing to some readers.

A former University of Ottawa student and accused rapist is now facing nine sexual assault charges.

The Ottawa Police Service (OPS) charged 34-year-old Paul Batchelor with three counts of sexual assault involving three different women on Tuesday.

The alleged assaults took place between 2009-16 after Batchelor met the women on social media or on dating apps, according to the OPS. Police believe there are more victims. 

The Ottawa Citizen reports Batchelor also has three rape trials set for 2020. The Citizen reports Gatineau police have charged Batchelor with three counts of sexual assault as well.

The Citizen reported in June that Batchelor won controversial acquittals in two other rape cases after the judge doubted the claims from the two women who had come forward.

The cases took place in May and June 2015, when Batchelor was a U of O student, according to his LinkedIn page. Both of the women’s names are protected by a publication ban. 

Ontario Superior Court Justice Robert Beaudoin said the first complainant’s testimony wasn’t reliable because of her “combative answers on the stand.” 

The complainant alleged Batchelor anally raped her at his apartment after they met online and went for a drink. She testified she had screamed “no” and pleaded for Batchelor to stop. 

“Curiously, no one seems to have heard her cries,” Justice Beaudoin told the court, drawing from Batchelor’s testimony that his Sandy Hill apartment was in an old building.

“It is difficult to accept that he would have continued assaulting (the woman) with his knowledge that her very loud screams could be heard.”

Paul Batchelor attended the U of O from 2014-16, according to his LinkedIn profile. Photo: LinkedIn

Justice Beaudoin also questioned the credibility of the testimony of the second complainant, a U of O student, because her timeline of the events differed from Batchelor and a friend’s account by about an hour, according to the Citizen. 

The two met in a study room at the U of O and went to his apartment, where the complainant said Batchelor forced oral sex on her. The complainant testified that she was able to kick Batchelor and escape.

“Consent can be given without a word being spoken,” Beaudoin told the court in siding with Batchelor’s testimony that the sex was consensual. As Vice reports, a person must affirmatively communicate consent through words or conduct in order for sexual activity to be lawful under the Canadian criminal code. 

Anyone with information regarding the investigation into Batchelor is asked to call the Sex Assault and Child Abuse Unit at 613-236-1222, ext. 5499. Anonymous tips can be submitted by calling Crime Stoppers toll-free at 1-800-222-8477 (TIPS), or crimestoppers.ca. 

If you or someone you know is affected by sexual assault, please contact 613-725-2160 (Sexual Assault Support Centre of Ottawa) or 613-562-2333 (Ottawa Rape Crisis Centre). To make your first appointment with U of O counselling visit Health Services at 100 Marie Curie Private. A full list of local sexual assault resources is available here.