Accused sailor says he wasn't comfortable telling police about homosexual acts

A Halifax sailor accused of sexually assaulting a subordinate told a court martial on Saturday that he omitted certain details while being interviewed by military police because he did not feel comfortable talking to investigators about a homosexual encounter.

Master Seaman Daniel Cooper testified under cross-examination in a Halifax military court that his interactions with military police prior to being interviewed led him to believe they were not interested in hearing his account of the alleged incident on Nov. 9, 2015.

Cooper has pleaded not guilty to sexual assault and ill treatment of a subordinate.

Prosecutor Maj. Dominic Martin questioned Cooper on Saturday about what he characterized as inconsistencies between his testimony before the court martial this week and portions of a filmed interview with military police Cooper gave in March 2016.

Cooper told Military Judge Cmdr. Sandra Sukstorf that the account he gave investigators was largely accurate up until what he says was a consensual sex act with the junior sailor.

The alleged victim, whose name is protected by a publication ban, testified Wednesday that he awoke to Cooper performing oral sex on him while the navy destroyer on which they served was visiting Spain as part of a NATO exercise.