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An alleged group sexual assault involving hockey players may go to court. Here’s what happens next PiPa News

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An alleged group sexual assault involving hockey players may go to court. Here’s what happens next

WARNING: This article contains graphic content and may affect those who have experienced sexual violence or know someone who has been affected by it.

News that five players from Canada’s 2018 World Junior team are expected to face sexual assault charges has raised questions about the next steps in the high-profile case.

This week, the Globe and Mail reported that the players were given until late next week to surrender to police in London, Ont., where a group sexual assault allegedly took place in 2018.

While the London Police declined to comment publicly on the case, they said they expected to hold a press conference on February 5 about the investigation.

Several players from the 2018 World Junior team requested and were granted leaves of absences this week from NHL and European teams. London Police have not named any of the accused.

London Police court filings indicate that investigators believe the case hinges on the question of consent. The accounts put forward by the alleged victim and the players conflicted on that key point.

SEE/ Five former world junior hockey players facing charges of sexual assault: report

Five former world junior hockey players will face sex assault charges, reports the Globe and Mail

Five players from the 2018 Canadian world junior hockey team have been ordered to surrender to police in London, Ont., to face charges related to an alleged group sexual assault in a room at a London hotel in 2018, the Globe and Mail reported.

Former Crown prosecutor Nick Cake said the players would be “arrested, just like anyone would be.”

“They either walk into the police station and do that, or eventually the police come and find them,” said Cake, now a criminal defense lawyer in London. He does not represent anyone involved in the case.

The defendants will then be read their rights and given an opportunity to speak with a lawyer, he said.

“Then, I think, [they would be] released with a court date and certain conditions at that point in time,” Cake said.

The case

A young woman known publicly only by the initials “EM” told London police that she was sexually assaulted by a group of junior hockey players in a London hotel room in 2018 after at a Hockey Canada Foundation Gala and Golf event, according to court files.

EM was 20 years old at the time of the alleged incident. London Police have not released his name.

Court documents revealed in 2022 that London Police believed they had reasonable grounds to charge five players with sexual assault at EM

The police, Hockey Canada and the NHL have all launched investigations and have not publicly identified any of the hockey players allegedly involved. The court redacted the defendant’s names and referred to them as “players #1-5”.

CBCs The Fifth Estate compiled all statements players from Canada’s 2018 World Junior hockey team made publicly about alleged sexual assault.

SEE/The Fifth Estate: Anatomy of a Scandal 2

Allegations of misconduct by Hockey Canada

The allegations

EM sued eight unnamed hockey players, Hockey Canada and the Canadian Hockey League in April 2022 for more than $3.5 million in damages.

In his statement of claim, EM alleged that he met one of the players at a local bar in London, where they were drinking. Court filings say EM told police he also remembers an “old gentleman” buying rounds for the group and pouring a “Jagerbomb into his mouth.” The man praised the player he was with and told EM to “take care of him,” court filings state.

EM said in her admissions statement that she returned to the player’s hotel room and had sex with him.

The statement of claim says that at one point, the player allowed seven other hockey players into the room without his “knowledge or consent.” The statement of claim also said the men brought “golf clubs with them, knowing they would frighten and frighten him.”

The statement of claim alleges that, over the course of several hours, the players performed a series of offensive sexual acts, including putting their genitals in EM’s face, hitting her buttocks, spitting and ejaculating on him and having sex with a woman while she is drunk is very acceptable.

The young woman reported that at some point she cried and tried to leave the room, but was “directed, manipulated and intimidated into staying,” the statement of claim said.

What the players told the police

Court documents written by the London Police state EM and the players agree in general about what happened the night of the alleged incident, but disagree on the main issue: consent.

EM told the police that he agreed to go to the hotel room with one of the players, but the other group of players did not agree to enter the room and those alleged sexual acts.

Players interviewed by police did not see it that way, according to court filings police wrote to request search warrants.

London Police said in court filings that they believe “EM does not condone any sexual activity, other than specific sexual act(s)” by the first player. EM told police in a statement in July 2022 that “I didn’t want to do what they made me do.”

SEE/The documents reveal new details of the alleged sexual assault

The documents reveal new details about the alleged junior hockey sexual assault

Recently filed court documents outline why police are seeking a search warrant to continue their investigation into five members of the 2018 World Junior hockey team who they believe were involved in the alleged sexual assault of a woman in London, Ont. None of the police allegations have been tested in court and no charges have been filed.

“He also described trying to leave on several occasions and that the exit from the unit was blocked,” wrote London Police Sgt. David Younan, who prepared the court application.

“She described crying. She explained that she had to retreat to the bathroom to get away several times. She couldn’t say ‘no.’ During the whole encounter he felt like he was out of everything. He was intoxicated.”

What the videos show

Court filings written by London Police say the player who EM agreed to sexual acts with was involved in filming two videos of EM in a hotel room where he asked if it was OK he.

In the first clip, which is about six seconds long, EM can be seen smiling at the beginning of the video. Court filings say EM was then seen wiping his eyes and speaking without slurring. The video was “short in duration and difficult to interpret in context,” London Police said in a court filing.

Police confirmed that the player who took him to the hotel was heard on the recording asking, “Hey, you’re OK with this, right?”

EM: “Yes.”

Man: “Are you okay with this?”

EM: “I’m fine with this.”

According to a London Police court filing, EM told police she didn’t realize she was being recorded, that she was wiping her eyes because she was overwhelmed, and that she thought she was crying.

The second video clip is about 12 seconds long, according to the court filing. The same male voice from the first clip is heard again and EM is seen partially covering himself with a white towel. Police included a transcript of the video in the court filing:

Man: “Say it.”

EM: “OK, it’s all consensual. Did you record me?”

Man: “Yes.”

EM “K, good. It’s all consensual.”

Man: “What else?”

EM: “Would you? You’re so paranoid, saint. I’m having fun, it’s okay, it’s all consensual. I’m very sober, so I can’t do it now.”

Police said in a court filing that the first player told investigators he was “concerned that something like this — about a police investigation — was going to happen.”

“The two video clips made by Player #1 were created, according to EM, to protect against him going to the police,” wrote Sgt. Younan. “Player #1 even asked him if he planned to go to the police … and demanded that he fix things with the police.”

The police investigation

London Police originally closed the first investigation into EM’s allegations in February 2019 by concluding that there were “no reasonable grounds to believe that a sexual assault took place.”

Three years later, after EM’s allegations were made public through his lawsuit, and after a public outcry, the London Police reopened the criminal case.

The CBCs Fifth Estate Talked to legal experts who said the initial police investigation was “at best.”

Hockey Canada contacted the law firm Henein Hutchison Robitaille for legal advice on June 19, 2018 after learning of the allegations. The company advised Hockey Canada to contact the police.

Two days later, according to the law firm, Hockey Canada retained Henein Hutchison Robitaille to conduct a third-party investigation to uncover the truth and identify any systemic or policy issues.

Hockey Canada then created what it calls an “independent adjudicative panel” to determine whether any of the players allegedly involved should face sanctions.

Hockey Canada announced in November that the panel had completed its confidential hearing behind closed doors and issued a final report. But Hockey Canada won’t disclose the results, saying an appeals process is expected to begin “in the near future” that will “also be conducted in camera.”

All players from the 2018 World Junior team are currently suspended by Hockey Canada and are ineligible to play, coach, volunteer or create any program sanctioned by Hockey Canada until Hockey Canada’s adjudicative panel completes its work. .

The NHL also conducted its own separate investigation into 2018’s alleged sexual assault by the team. When asked for an update on the status of the investigation, the NHL this week did not respond to CBC News’ request.

The federal government has also announced a commission to investigate systematic abuse of games starting in 2024.

For anyone who has been sexually assaulted, there is support available through crisis lines and local support services through Government of Canada website or the End of Violence Association of Canada database. If you are in danger or fear for your safety or that of others around you, please call 911.

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