Stony Plain Mountie Convicted of 10 Criminal Charges

Stony Plain courthouse.

A now-retired RCMP officer who was the subject of two police watchdog investigations has been convicted of 10 criminal charges.

Provincial court Judge Morris Golden, who heard the case, found that while working as a police officer between 2012 and 2016, Aaron Lee Sayler, 33, harassed and damaged the property of women with whom he’d been romantically involved, filed a false hit-and-run collision report in order to collect insurance money, stole an airsoft gun from a suspect during a vehicle search and committed fraud against the RCMP by forging documents in order to get transfer-related benefits.

The slew of charges were the result of two rounds of investigation by the Alberta Law Enforcement Response Team (ASIRT), announced in October 2016 and June 2017.

Sayler was convicted of the following offences on Sept. 28: fraud over $5,000; obtaining money by making a false statement in writing; using a forged document to commit an offence; harassment; mischief damaging or destroying property; theft under $5,000; making a false statement in order to get payment; using a forged document; mischief by obstructing lawful use or enjoyment of property; and fraud under $5,000.

In a decision filed Sept. 29, Golden wrote that Sayler’s evidence in his own defence during the trial was unconvincing.

“Mr. Sayler’s testimony while highly self-serving, makes little sense and the vast majority has no air of reality. In cross-examination Mr. Sayler was extremely evasive, equivocal and avoided direct responses,” the judge wrote.

Allegations of stalking, harassment
Four women with whom he had previously had intimate relationships — which overlapped, at times, often unbeknownst to them — testified at the trial.

Court heard allegations that Sayler stalked and harassed women he was involved with, and that he enlisted a current girlfriend to drive him to an ex’s home so he could egg it on three occasions. The woman who drove him said Sayler covered the eggs in glitter glue and wrote derogatory insults on them.

He was also accused of slashing a tire on another woman’s vehicle. That woman obtained an emergency protection order against Sayler.

The woman who helped him during the egging later contacted one of the targeted women and told her what Sayler had been up to.

“She was told by him, and she believed him, when he said these women were evil and that they had wrecked his life,” Golden wrote of the woman, who gave evidence that Sayler had forged her signature on a common law declaration form, which enabled him to defraud the RCMP of relocation benefits.

Airsoft gun theft, insurance fraud
The theft charge relates to Sayler’s seizure of an airsoft gun during a search of a suspect’s truck in March 2015. The gun was recovered from a locked drawer in Sayler’s desk, along with other airsoft guns. Golden found Sayler would have known seizing the airsoft gun wasn’t lawful, as it isn’t a weapon.

The insurance fraud related to damage to Sayler’s truck, which he opened a fictitious RCMP collision report for, and used the file number to file a hit and run claim for over $1,600 with his insurance company. Court heard the damage actually occurred when one of the women he was involved with backed her car into his truck, and though she offered to pay for the repair he refused.

Sayler resigned from the RCMP in 2016, and told court he is now in the pharmacy program at the University of Alberta.

A sentencing hearing is scheduled for Nov. 30 in Stony Plain.