Man accused in high-profile sexual assault case found dead in Dartmouth

Alexander Joseph Frederick Thomas’ death on Saturday was ruled a homicide

A 35-year-old man accused in a high-profile sexual assault case has been found dead in a Dartmouth home.

Alexander Joseph Frederick Thomas from East Preston was found unresponsive in a residence on Braeside Court at 1:47 a.m. on Saturday, Halifax Regional Police said.

The medical examiner’s officer conducted an autopsy overnight and ruled the death a homicide.

On Sunday afternoon, a forensic team walked out of 58 Braeside Ct. wearing protective gear. Two police vehicles were parked outside the residence, and caution tape surrounded the property.

In February 2020, Thomas was charged with the sexual assault and forcible confinement of Carrie Low. Low’s case has been highly publicized due to her ongoing complaint against police for their alleged mishandling of her case.

Low applied for the publication ban on her name to be lifted, and last month a judge granted her approval.

Thomas was set to appear in court on Tuesday and Wednesday at a pre-trial hearing, and on Nov. 23 and 24 for an in camera hearing.

On Sunday, the Elizabeth Fry Society of Mainland Nova Scotia issued a media release saying that the accused in Low’s sexual assault case was dead.

“Carrie is shaken by the news of Alexander Thomas’ passing. Her sympathies go out to his family and community,” Emma Halpern, a member of Low’s legal team and the executive director of the Elizabeth Fry Society of Nova Scotia, said in a media release.

“She is also concerned about the impact this may have on her quest for justice in her case. Carrie and her legal team are still processing this shocking news and will be determining the way forward in the coming days.”

The statement said Low was not taking media requests on Sunday.

On May 19, 2018, Low reported to police that she had been drugged, taken from a bar in Dartmouth and sexually assaulted.

After a year of apparent delays, lack of communication and inactivity on her case, Low filed complaints against the RCMP and Halifax Regional Police in May 2019.

The complaint against Halifax Regional Police was initially rejected because the time limit for filing a complaint had expired. Low filed an appeal and in April 2020 a judge overturned the decision and sent the complaint back to the provincial Police Complaints Commissioner.

Victoria Welland

Victoria is a journalist with The Signal at the University of King's College. She is also a member of the news team at CKDU 88.1 FM. Originally from Saskatoon, SK, Victoria did her Bachelor's of Humanities degree at Carleton University. She now lives in Halifax.

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