NOT GUILTY: Peachland man innocent of sexual assault charges - InfoNews

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NOT GUILTY: Peachland man innocent of sexual assault charges

Shea Gardecki, born 1977, was on trial for charges of sexual assaulting two sleeping women in 2016.
Image Credit: Global Okanagan (with permission)
January 29, 2018 - 3:06 PM

KELOWNA – A Peachland man has been found not guilty of breaking into a Kelowna townhouse and groping two sleeping women.

Shea Gardecki, born 1977, faced two charges of sexual assault and one charge of break and enter from an incident on Highland Drive North Aug. 23, 2016.

One of the victims, whose identity is protected by publication ban, testified last week that around 8 p.m. she and a friend awoke from a nap to find Gardecki touching them between their legs.

Both testified that his pants were down and he was under the covers.

Two friends of the victims arrived at the townhouse and passed Gardecki coming down the stairs. One of them told the jury Gardecki mumbled “wrong unit” and “it happens.”

“We go upstairs and (the victims) are sitting there with a stunned look on their face,” the friend said.

Once the two women told them what had happened, they ran outside to see him at the end of the street turning the corner.

The friend said they called police immediately after they saw the suspect turn the corner at the end of the street, but the victim who testified the day before said they went looking for him first. Gardecki was arrested within hours on the same street.

Gardecki never took the stand in his defence, but statements made to police were read to the jury. 

“I don’t remember anything,” he said when asked if he touched the girls. “I wouldn’t do that. In my normal state of mind I would never do anything like that.”

The jury began deliberating Wednesday afternoon, Jan. 24, and returned it's not guilty verdict over the weekend in Kelowna Supreme Court, according to Crown spokesperson Alisia Adams.

To contact a reporter for this story, email Adam Proskiw or call 250-718-0428 or email the editor. You can also submit photos, videos or news tips to the newsroom and be entered to win a monthly prize draw.

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