Man charged with sex assault on buses

A 34-year-old Ottawa man accused of preying on young women riding city buses is facing 15 new charges in connection with a string of sexual assaults.

“We have four victims that we have proceeded with charges,” said Ottawa police Staff Sgt. Angela McDade of the sexual assault/child abuse unit.

The incidents were reported between Nov. 22, 2012 and Jan. 15, 2013.

Last May, the man was slapped with six charges — three counts of sexual assault and three counts of mischief — also related to incidents on OC Transpo buses dating back to Dec. 8 and 13, 2011 and Feb. 14, 2012.

In Dec. 2011, cops issued a warning about a man targeting a teenager on westbound buses originating from the east end.

There were empty seats, cops said at the time, but the man purposely sat beside the girl and inappropriately touched her.

In both Dec. 2011 cases, the suspect description matched: 35 to 40 years old with a slim build, olive complexion, short black hair, wearing a dark jacket, and carrying a laptop bag. He wore glasses during one assault.

Those charges are before the court.

The man is now charged with five counts of sexual assault and 10 counts of failing to comply with conditions of his release.

The suspect had the same M.O. in the recent cases, said McDade, adding police believe he acted alone.

The victims were traveling solo, sitting “usually in the rear of the bus,” she said.

As for any patterns pertaining to time of day, “I don’t have any (incidents) in the morning,” said McDade.

Cops are advising passengers to immediately report all incidents of inappropriate touching to a bus driver.

Racil Hilan appears in court for a bail hearing Wednesday; his lawyer declined to comment.

Anyone with information can contact the sexual assault/child abuse unit at 613-236-1222, ext. 5944 or Crime Stoppers at 613-233-8477 (TIPS).

— files from Megan Gillis

Twitter: @ottawasunkroche

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