Police officer accused of sexually assaulting woman at training college

Christopher Cowan is accused of attacking two women outside a police station in Motherwell and at the force's Fife training college.

Police Scotland officer accused of sexually assaulting women outside station and at training college STV News

A Police Scotland officer will face a trial accused of sexually assaulting two women – one of them in a police station car park and the other at Scotland’s national police training college.

Christopher Cowan, 38, is said to have carried out the assault at the Scottish Police College, Tulliallan Castle, Fife, “on or between the October 6 and October 8, 2021”, by repeatedly touching the alleged victim on her body.

It is alleged he then seized hold of her by the hips over her clothing and “pulled her body towards his crotch”.

It is alleged that he sexually assaulted the other alleged victim on October 18, 2021 in the car park of Motherwell Police Station, Orbiston Street, Motherwell, by seizing hold of her hips and touching her buttock over her clothing.

At Alloa Sheriff Court, Cowan, who was not personally present, pleaded not guilty to both charges by means of a letter from his solicitors, Levy and McRae.

Cowan’s address was given as care of the Professional Standards Department, Police Scotland, Fettes Avenue, Edinburgh.

Sheriff Neil Bowie ordained Cowan to appear for summary trial on May 2, 2023. He also ordered that a procedural hearing should be held on April 13th, to make sure all is ready for the trial.

He excused Cowan from attending the preliminary hearing. Cowan is currently suspended from the force.

A Police Scotland spokesperson said, “As proceedings are active, we won’t be providing any comment.”

Police Scotland has faced a series of allegations of sexism, misogyny and bullying.

In a landmark review published in 2020, former lord advocate Dame Elish Angiolini urged the Scottish Government to overhaul how complaints against Police Scotland are investigated.

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