Gymnastics coach who worked in Kingston, Ottawa charged with sexual assault
Content warning: the following article contains content that may be disturbing for some readers. Reader discretion is advised.
A gymnastics instructor who spent time in Kingston and Ottawa coaching children’s gymnastics teams has been charged with sexual assault.
The Ottawa Police Service Sexual Assault and Child Abuse Unit said on Wednesday, Feb. 15, 2023 that officers had charged 27-year-old Toronto and Whitby resident Benjamin Cooper for sexual offences that occurred between 2014 and 2022. According to police, the alleged offences involved seven victims, girls between 14 to 17 years old, in the Ottawa and Kingston area.
“From 2014 to 2021, he was employed by Gymnastics Ontario working in Ottawa and Kingston,” Ottawa Police said. “Sexual offences took place in the course of his coaching duties and after hours, and incidents continued into 2022.”
Online records show that Cooper was a law student at Queen’s University and an articling student at a Toronto-area law firm. While in Kingston, he was a coach at Trillium Gymnastics.
Cooper was arrested this morning, with assistance from Toronto Police, following a full investigation by the Ottawa Police that commenced in April, 2022, police said.
Charges laid include:
- 6 counts of Sexual Assault
- 2 counts of Sexual Interference with a person under 16 yrs of age
- 3 counts of Invitation to Sexual Touching under the age of 16 yrs of age
- 3 counts of Unlawful possession of Child Pornography
- 5 counts of Sexual Exploitation, and
- 1 count of Harassment by repeated communication with person
“Police are concerned there may be more victims in the Ottawa and Kingston areas. We are asking victims to contact their local Police Service for more information,” Ottawa Police continued.
Anyone with information is asked to contact the Ottawa Police Service Sexual Assault and Child Abuse Unit at 613-236-1222, ext. 5944.
Possible victims in the Kingston area may contact Kingston Police at 613-549-4660.
Anonymous tips can be submitted by calling Crime Stoppers toll-free at 1-800-222-8477 or at crimestoppers.ca.
For survivors of sexual violence, police has put in place the following resources and supports.
One thought on “Gymnastics coach who worked in Kingston, Ottawa charged with sexual assault”