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Former Annapolis Valley tennis instructor charged with child luring makes court elections, plea

Aaron Cumberland, formerly of Kentville, will be back in court in January for election and plea on several sex-related charges involving children. - File Photo
Aaron Cumberland, formerly of Kentville, was back in court on Jan. 30 for election and plea on several sex-related charges involving children. - File Photo

KENTVILLE, NS - A former Annapolis Valley tennis instructor facing charges that involve luring children has elected two different courts for his upcoming trials.

Aaron Byron Cumberland, 27, who according to court documents is currently of no fixed address and staying in a Halifax hostel, was present in Kentville provincial court on Jan. 30 to answer to five charges. It’s alleged that one of the offences was committed in Kentville and the other four in Windsor.

He is charged with communicating with a person under the age of 18 by means of telecommunications for the purpose of facilitating the commission of an offence under Section 163.1 of the Criminal Code. This section relates to child pornography. It’s alleged that Cumberland committed the offence in Kentville between March 1 and June 30, 2016.

Reading of the charge was waived and Cumberland pleaded not guilty. He elected trial by provincial court judge. The matter has been adjourned to June 21 for trial.

The four offences that were allegedly committed in Windsor include communicating with a person under age 16 by means of telecommunications for the purpose of facilitating the commission of an offence under Section 152 of the Criminal Code, which relates to invitation to sexual touching; making sexually explicit material available to a person under age 16 and invitation to sexual touching. It’s alleged that Cumberland committed these offences in Windsor between Nov. 2 and 5, 2017.

Cumberland is facing a second count of communicating with a person under the age of 18 by means of telecommunications for the purpose of facilitating the commission of an offence relating to child pornography. It’s alleged that Cumberland committed this offence in Windsor between March 1 and June 30, 2017.

Reading of the four charges alleged to have occurred in Windsor was waived and Cumberland elected trial by Supreme Court judge and jury. These matters have been adjourned to Feb. 27 for a status report and to Oct. 10 for a preliminary inquiry.

Cumberland was released from custody on his own $1,000 recognizance with conditions following a Nov. 20 appearance in Halifax provincial court.

His release conditions include not possessing any electronic device capable of accessing the Internet. He was ordered to deposit his passport with the Lower Sackville RCMP. Cumberland is to permit the police to search for electronic devices if they attend his place of residence to check compliance. He is to have no direct or indirect contact or communication with anyone under the age of 18 unless the contact is incidental.

Cumberland turned himself in to the Halifax Regional Police on Nov. 17 after the RCMP released his name and photo, asking for assistance from the public to locate Cumberland.

Cumberland, a former Kentville resident, was named Tennis Nova Scotia’s Coach of the Year in 2013. He worked as executive director of the CANgaroo Athletic Association, which put on tennis skill development sessions - including school programs - in several Kings and Hants county communities.

The identities of the three alleged victims are protected by publication bans. Charges against Cumberland have not been proven in court.

Kirk.starratt@kingscountynews.ca

Click here for a story on Cumberland turning himself in to police.

Click here for a story on Cumberland being released on conditions.

Click here for a story on Cumberland’s Nov. 27 court appearance.

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