TSN reports that Sources confirm NHL players facing charges

Content Warning: The following article contains references to sexual assault.

Four National Hockey League players, Carter Hart, Michael McLeod, Dillon Dube, and Cal Foote, have been directed to surrender to police in London, Ont. They are expected to be charged with sexual assault. These charges are in connection with an alleged incident that occurred during a Hockey Canada event in the city in June 2018, two sources familiar with the matter told TSN.

Former NHL player Alex Formenton has already surrendered and is facing chargers. Last week five players from the 2018 Canadian World Junior Championship team were ordered to surrender to London Police. Rumours immediately swirled when all 5 of these players were granted leaves from their clubs.

London Police expect the other 4 players to surrender before next weeks press conference on Monday. Lawyers for the 4 remaining players have declined to comment or did not respond to a request for comment.

Gary Ellis, the former head of Toronto Police Service’s sex crimes unit, told TSN in an interview that the players would be photographed, fingerprinted, and directed to sign an undertaking not to have contact with the alleged victim, either the first time they report to police or at a subsequent date.

According to what was posted on Twitter it is expected that a trial may not happen right away. It was suggested that it may be up to two years before a trial happens.

The five players are accused of sexually assaulting a woman at a London hotel on June 19, 2018, following a Hockey Canada Foundation golf and gala event.

The complainant, referred to as E.M. in court documents, met some of players at a downtown bar following the event. She has alleged in a civil lawsuit that she left the bar with one man and had consensual sex with him. That man then invited other players to his room, without E.M.’s consent, to have sex with E.M., she alleged.  The original reporting said there were 8 players involved. Currently only 5 players are facing charges. I have not heard any reports that there are charges pending against anyone else.

The NHL and the Hockey Canada have launched investigations into this incident. However, those reports have not been made public yet. Possibly due to the police investigation. Now that names are released I am hoping the NHL suspends these players permanently. Possibly allowing teams to terminate contracts. Due to the fact the allegations have not been proven the NHL may not be able to make such moves.

London police initially investigated E.M.’s allegations before closing the case in February 2019 without laying charges because the lead detective didn’t believe there was enough evidence.

In May 2022, TSN reported Hockey Canada had – without consulting any players involved in the alleged incident – quietly settled a $3.55-million lawsuit brought by E.M. against Hockey Canada, the Canadian Hockey League and eight unnamed players in connection to the alleged attack. The story led to parliamentary hearings and a maelstrom of public backlash. The NHL and Hockey Canada commissioned investigations and the London police in July 2022 said they would re-open their investigation.

In October 2022, London police filed a 94-page document in court requesting authorization to seek various court orders. In the filing, which was first reported by The Globe, a London police officer wrote that he believed there were reasonable grounds to believe that five members of the 2018 World Junior team had committed sexual assault in connection to the hotel incident.

Due to these accusations Hockey Canada lost sponsors and funding. Members of the board either resigned or were removed. Hockey Canada has gone ahead and changed how they operate. Also with how they will proceed with potential allegations in the future.

The CBC is also reporting that Mike McLeod has now officially been charged with Sexual Assault from this investigation as well.

Four NHL players face sexual assault charges related to an alleged group incident in 2018 in London, Ont., when they were members of Canada’s World Junior hockey team.

I will continue reporting this as news comes out.

Read the TSN report here.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Discover more from Brians Sports Blog

Subscribe now to keep reading and get access to the full archive.

Continue reading