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Ottawa police officer accused of accessing police databases in death of infant and child cases


A public disciplinary hearing continued Thursday for an Ottawa Police constable who allegedly accessed police database to get private information in the deaths of nine infant and child cases.


Cases where she had no investigative role or responsibility in.  


Const. Helen Grus is facing one charge of discreditable conduct under the Police Services Act. The virtual disciplinary hearing is being led by retired police Supt. Chris Renwick. 


According to police documents, police allege between June 2020 and January 2022, Grus acted in a “disorderly manner” when Grus “self-initiated an unauthorized project” and accessed private information from nine child or infant death cases. Police say Grus did not record her involvement or findings in the file. 


Grus is also facing allegations of interference when police say in January 2022, she allegedly contacted the father of a deceased baby to ask the COVID-19 vaccination status of the mother. Police say Grus did not tell the lead detective in the case and did not have authorization. 


Police say the acts are an offence contrary to Police Services Act. 


Grus first appeared before the disciplinary hearing in August. 


On Thursday, Angela Stewart, representing the prosecution, asked for more time to disclose additional information to the defence. 


Grus has waived legal representation and was joined at the hearing by Pam Twining of the Ottawa Police Association. 


Stewart says both parties have had discussions, but Twining is waiting for an offer in writing to take to Grus. 


The next step in the hearing will take place on Oct. 11. 


The allegations have not been proven in front of the hearing. 


The Ottawa Police Association says they do not generally comment on an ongoing hearing, but says Const. Grus has the support of the OPA during this trying and difficult time.


Cst. Grus has been suspended with pay since February 4, 2022.

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