EHS parts ways with Kentville paramedic on trial for sexual assault

Ashley
Ashley Thompson
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KENTVILLE - A paramedic on trial for sexual assault accusations no longer has a job to go back to following his day in court.

James Duncan Keats, 49, has been dismissed from his position with Emergency Health Services (EHS). He

The Kentville resident is standing trial in Windsor provincial court on allegations that he sexually assaulted a 71-year-old Mount Uniacke woman on two separate occasions when she was a patient in his care.

He  pleaded not guilty to all charges.

“When the allegations against James Keats were initially brought forward, we immediately removed him from active duty,”  EHS spokeswoman Stacey Brown said in an email Dec. 30.

Keats was suspended from practicing as a paramedic when he was charged with two counts sexual assault and breach of trust in May 2013, but he was still employed with EHS when his trial began in September.

“Most recently, the court proceedings produced new details of his conduct that violate our EHS Ethical Code of Conduct. We have ended his employment with our organization,” Brown said.

At his latest court appearance in Windsor, video footage of Keats’ providing statements to police following his arrest was deemed inadmissible as evidence in the trial.

Judge Claudine MacDonald ruled that the Keats’ statements to police were involuntary.

MacDonald expressed concern about the amount of time that lapsed between Keats’ arrest and the interview with police, how long it took for Keats to be brought before a justice of the peace and how Keats was treated in his interactions with the interviewing officers.

The complainant, now 72, is alleging Keats forced vaginal sex on her without her consent during a service call to her home in May 2013. Keats repeatedly denied this in the interview with the police, telling one interviewing officer he’s “not some sick predator.”

In the second of two videotaped statements, Keats tells the interviewing police officer he allowed the complainant to masturbate him.

Keats, who has not testified in his own trial to date, has also been accused of fondling the same woman while she was being transported to a hospital in an ambulance in September 2012.

 

Read more about the case here.

Organizations: Emergency Health Services

Geographic location: Kentville, Windsor, Mount Uniacke

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