University of Ottawa criminal lawyer Blair Crew, said about a third of investigations into sexual assault end with police saying the allegations are unfounded. [...] he said Ottawa police tend to discount a higher proportion of sexual assaults than they do other crimes.
Crew said for a four-year period from 2003-2007, 31 per cent of sexual assault claims that Ottawa Police investigated were dismissed as unfounded — that is, they [believe] never happened — as opposed to unsubstantiated, where there isn't enough evidence to follow the case.
He said by comparison, Toronto's police — which had gone through an audit in how it conducts sexual assault investigations — found only seven per cent of claims to be unfounded. And the rate of claims reported to police that are ruled unfounded tends to be about two to three per cent for other crimes, said Crew. [...]
He said police, still largely male-based organizations, tend to view sexual assaults as something that didn't occur and treat claimants more as suspects than as complainants.
"Frontline sexual assault workers as well as [...] women that have been in my office over a number of years have been insisting they were sexually assaulted despite the police insistence that no crime occurred," he said.
When you consider the Ottawa police force employs individuals like Melanie Morris and Steven Desjourdy, and that it rejects close to 1/3 of all complaints of sexual assault. it's no surprise women don't bother filing charges.