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Crown withdraws anticipated plea deal for OPP officer

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There were dramatic moments inside an Orangeville courtroom on Monday as sentencing for an OPP officer accused of assaulting her former boyfriend two years ago was delayed.

About an hour after Amanda Farrell pleaded guilty to the assault, the Crown withdrew the plea deal, citing new information.

The court heard it was on that basis the plea had been struck.

Crown Attorney Ameen Al Rohani read to the court the Agreed Statement of Fact, noting that Farrell admitted to getting into an argument at the home with her former boyfriend when she stopped him from leaving the bathroom, holding on to his shirt and twisting his arm before he left. The interaction was recorded on video.

Farrell, however, did not admit to the other allegations described in the Agreed Statement of Fact. The Crown decided it would not be staying the charges as previously agreed upon.

Farrell is facing six counts, including assault, relating to incidents in July and then September 2022 when she is accused of showing up at her ex's home while on duty and in full uniform and entering the home uninvited.

Her former boyfriend is also an OPP officer.

In an interview with CTV News in October 2023, his girlfriend said she feared for her safety and retaliation by the female officer, saying, "We at one point had said, 'If you don't leave, we're going to have to call the police,' and she said, 'I am the police."

Two weeks later, Farrell claimed the man assaulted her months earlier while they were dating, and charges against him were filed but later dropped by Halton Police, which conducted the investigation involving the two OPP officers.

Along with being accused of break-and-enter with intent to commit an indictable offence, Farrell also faced another count of assault along with criminal harassment, mischief and forcible confinement.

All the remaining charges were to be stayed, but on Monday, the Crown said new information had come to his attention, and he now wished to proceed with the charges.

In sentencing submissions to the court, the Crown argued Farrell "should have known better as an officer of the law," adding, "I would expect better. The public would expect better behaviour."

Defence Lawyer Naomi Lutes told the court Farrell "realizes her career as a police officer may very well be over" and that she would "likely be seeking new employment in the near future."

The defence said Farrell and her former boyfriend were in a complicated and toxic relationship.

Farrell's lawyer told the court the 39-year-old single mother of two school-aged children is studying to become an accountant.

The matter returns to court in late June.

The allegations against Farrell have not been tested in court.

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