A special prosecutor has been hired to oversee the investigation and trial of a former Burns Lake mayor facing numerous sex assault related charges.
Luke Strimbold has been charged with numerous counts of sexual assault and related charges after being arrested by Burns Lake RCMP on Feb. 3, according to police.
Leonard Doust, QC, has been hired on in relation to the investigation, the B.C. Prosecution Service announced Wednesday.
The Vancouver-based lawyer will conduct an independent assessment of the charges against Strimbold, provide a report to the assistance deputy attorney general and determine if a prosecution is warranted.
According to the Prosecution Service, Doust’s appointment is “intended to avoid any potential for real or perceived improper influence in the administration of justice in light of the nature of the allegations and the identity of the accused as a former elected municipal official with significant connections to the BC Liberal party.”
Strimbold, was B.C.’s youngest mayor until he resigned suddenly in 2016 to focus on his education and his family.
After resigning, he joined the BC Liberal Party and became its membership chair for the provincial executive board.
After news of charges against Strimbold broke, the Liberal Party said he resigned from the board and had been removed from its membership.