Sex assault trial for former Kingsville fire chief set to begin
Published Monday, January 7, 2019 3:07PM EST
Last Updated Monday, January 7, 2019 5:37PM EST
The sexual assault trial for Kingsville's former fire chief is scheduled to begin this week.
Robert Kissner, 62, faces a total of 17 sex-related offences involving nearly 10 victims.
Kissner was in superior court Monday where a pre-motion hearing took place.
Members of the media were not allowed inside the courtroom when the pre-trial motion was heard.
But those on the witness list were allowed inside and there were dozens of them.
Many were family members of the victims who cannot be identified due to a publication ban.
Kissner was first arrested in December of 2016 after OPP were told about an alleged incident involving the sexual assault of a minor.
Since that time, three adult men and several other boys have come forward.
As a result, Kissner faces 11 charges of sexual assault, five counts of sexual exploitation and one charge of sexual interference, meaning one incident involved an alleged victim under the age of 16.
Kissner’s lawyer, Ken Marley, says the alleged incidents date back to the late 1980’s.
Kissner was released on bail and suspended from his position as fire chief.
In February of 2017, he announced his retirement.
At that time, Kingsville hired a third-party investigator, who was brought in to conduct an arms-length investigation, which involved interviews with municipal staff and members of the fire department.
The serious allegations have left the small community of Kingsville in disbelief as he was well known and highly respected.
Kissner led the fire departments in Kingsville and Leamington for more than 30 years.
In addition to his position as fire chief, Kissner was a teacher at a Christian school in Ruthven and has been the organist and choir director at Epworth united church, for more than 26 years.
Marley tell CTV News witness testimony will begin Thursday.
Three weeks have been set aside for his trial.