RCMP have released a statement saying that the Fort St. John RCMP were mistaken in charging Fort St. John resident Barton Christopher Tetreau with possession of child pornography and distribution of child pornography earlier this year.
Fort St. John RCMP announced in June that the charges were laid after American authorities alerted them to a computer at a local residence that was implicated in child pornography.
A search warrant was executed on June 20, Tetreau’s computer was seized for analysis, and the charges were laid, police said.
Now, after a months-long investigation, RCMP have concluded that Tetreau’s wireless internet connection was accessed by someone else, without his knowledge, to perpetrate the alleged crimes.
In a statement, RCMP Cpl. Dave Tyreman of the Fort St. John RCMP said charges were laid against Tetreau before new evidence came to light.
"Our investigators conducted a very thorough investigation and acted in good faith with the information supplied to them at the time the charges were approved," Tyreman said.
The charges against Tetreau have been stayed, and the investigation continues.
In a press release issued last week, the officer in charge of the Fort St. John detachment, Staff Sgt. Marcel Guilbaul, said he regretted the charges.
“I apologize to Mr. Tetreau for the allegation of his involvement with this offence and regret any negative consequences suffered by Mr. Tetreau.
"Our Criminal investigation has confirmed that Mr. Tetreau was not involved in the alleged offences,” he said.