FILE PHOTO

Vancouver Island parents charged for capture of child luring suspect

Video of Port Alberni assault was widely distributed on social media

A Port Alberni couple has pleaded not guilty to charges related to the capture of a man who was allegedly at their house to have sex with their 13-year-old daughter.

The girl’s mother, her partner and a family friend have been charged with assault causing bodily harm and unlawful confinement. The trio appeared at the Port Alberni Law Court on Wednesday, Jan. 2, where the mother and step-father pleaded not guilty. They are scheduled to re-appear in court on Friday, Jan. 11.

Alberni Valley News is choosing not to release the names of those charged in order to protect the identity of the underage girl.

The case has already gained momentum on social media, with Port Alberni residents promising to appear at the courthouse on Friday to show support. A post shared on the Facebook group AV Chatter Box reads, “Everyone and their dog should come down to the courthouse and show support for the parents that were protecting their 13 yr old daughter from a pedophile.”

READ: Alberni parents protest for children’s rights

Port Alberni RCMP were called to a disturbance in the 3600-block of Bruce Street back in April 2018, where they discovered a 28-year-old man injured and secured with zap-straps. The man, who is the subject of an ongoing RCMP child luring investigation, allegedly came to the residence to meet a 13-year-old girl and have sex with her, according to the girl’s mother. The whole incident was captured on video and widely distributed on social media.

READ: RCMP in Port Alberni are warning the public about vigilante justice

READ: Alberni RCMP ask for patience in child luring case

The mother, step-father and their friend were arrested in October on allegations of assault and forcible confinement after a report was submitted by Port Alberni RCMP. Crown Counsel approved the charges, and the three made their first court appearance in early November.

Port Alberni RCMP confirmed on Monday, Jan. 7 that the man who was forcibly confined has not been charged, and that the incident is “still under investigation.”

A GoFundMe account set up under the name Children’s Rights Before Predators is raising funds for the family’s legal costs.

elena.rardon@albernivalleynews.com

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