TORONTO - Toronto's police services board has been ordered to pay a woman $215,000 plus legal costs over a sexual assault almost 30 years.

Marian Evans, who is now 54, was 24 when a Toronto police officer fondled and tried to kiss her after a traffic stop.

An Ontario Superior Court Justice also ordered the officer, John David Sproule, to pay $25,000 in punitive damages.

Sproule had pleaded guilty to indecent assault and was fined $1,000 after the 1979 incident, then quit the force and moved to Northern Ontario.

Evan's lawyer, Susan Vella, says the court-ordered award is a landmark decision that is `very important for women' across the country.

Vella says it's also the first time a Canadian court has held a police board, or force, vicariously responsible for sexual misconduct committed by one of its officers.