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Serving officer said ‘she looked asleep or dead’, sexual assault trial hears

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Steven Tissier

The alleged victim of a sexual assault by a serving police officer did not find out he had filmed the incident until months later, a court heard. The trial of former police officer Steven Tissier continued at Chelmsford Crown Court on Monday (February 12) with the accused giving evidence.

37-year-old Tissier is accused of sexual assault and voyeurism in connection to an incident in March 2022 where he allegedly assaulted the victim, who was known to him, and filming it without her permission. Tissier, who was a serving Essex Police officer at the time, denies both charges.

The jury previously heard the victim had been with Tissier and a number of others at a bar where “a lot of alcohol had been consumed”, then taking a train from London to Chelmsford railway station with a friend, arriving into Essex shortly after midnight before going to Tissier’s mother’s home, where the alleged assault took place.

Tissier insists that the sexual acts were consensual and the woman knew she was being filmed. Matthew Sorel-Cameron, prosecuting, asked Tissier: “What reason did she have to agree to be filmed?” Tissier said: “The previous conversation we had about filming and I believe she had seen my phone.”

Mr Sorel-Cameron asked Tissier if the burden was on the woman to say so if she did not want to be touched. Tissier said: “No, if she didn’t want to be touched I wouldn’t have but it was my opinion that it was something that was happening that both wanted to happen. It was something we had previously discussed and I didn’t see there was an issue to film it. I believe she was consenting.”

The jury heard that the woman was not moving or making any noises during the filming of the incident, but Tissier still insisted she had consented and was aware of the filming. The jury heard that Tissier has sent a message to a friend saying the woman “looked asleep or dead”. When asked why he thought she looked dead, he said: “It was the fact that she was lying there, she wasn’t jumping around. It was a figure of speech.”

Mr Sorel-Cameron said to Tissier: “The reality is by 2.19 she is fast asleep on the sofa, isn’t she?” Tissier replied: “I don’t believe she was fast asleep”. Mr Sorel-Cameron said: “The videos you took of her were solely for your own benefit.” Tissier responded the video was “for the benefit of both of us”.

Mr Sorel-Cameron put to Tissier: “The first time she heard about them was months after you took them, you heard her say that didn’t you? Was she lying?” Tissier replied: “I don’t think she was lying, I was under the impression that she knew they were being taken.”

The trial continues.

-Ellis Whitehouse

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