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Ottawa 'sexsomniac' not criminally responsible for sex assault on daughter because he was sleepwalking

An Ottawa man on trial for sexually assaulting his seven-year-old daughter was found not criminally responsible on Tuesday after a judge ruled he was in a state of automatism while sleepwalking.

Diagnosed with "sexsomnia," or sleep sex, the man was accused of crawling into bed with his young daughter in December, 2010, after his wife kicked him out of bed after a night of drinking. He then allegedly removed his daughter's underwear and held her down as he touched her. He allegedly pushed the Grade 3 student off the bed when she tried to fight him off.

Dr. Colin Shapiro, a sleep expert, testified at trial that the man was likely asleep when the assault took place, suffering from parasomnia, a type of sleep disorder that can include sleep eating, sleep walking and sleep sex, that he said can be triggered by alcohol consumption.

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