The hockey world was rocked by a report that Hockey Canada is re-opening a sexual assault investigation according to an open letter on their website and the Jane Doe who filed the lawsuit will cooperate with the investigation. Hockey Canada had settled with Jane Doe prior and has been accused by many in the Canadian government of trying to sweep this whole thing under the rug. The investigation is looking into the 2018 Canadian World Junior’s Team for an alleged sexual assault that involved eight players on the team after a Hockey Canada golf event. A team Carter Hart was on the roster for. Plenty of players from that roster have come out and cleared their names publicly:
Here is my statement regarding the ongoing Hockey Canada investigation: pic.twitter.com/bE3WnuxyLU
— vmete98 (@vmete98) June 30, 2022
My statement regarding the Hockey Canada investigation: pic.twitter.com/E0zPioOuOC
— Jordan Kyrou (@JordanKyrou) July 20, 2022
— Robert Thomas (@RThomas_27) July 19, 2022
Hart has cleared his statement through an attorney according to the Toronto Star:
The Star reached out to the agent or lawyer of every player from that 2018 squad, asking if they welcomed the chance to clear the air and perhaps their reputation. The agent representing Flames centre Dillon Dubé and a lawyer for Canadiens defenceman Kale Clague, Blue Jackets winger Jake Bean and Flyers goalie Carter Hart were the first to respond, via email.
“Dillon did not engage in any wrongdoing, and he co-operated fully with the independent London Police Service investigation in 2018, through which all players were then cleared of any wrongdoing,” wrote Dubé’s agent, Dave Cowan.
From lawyer Scott K. Fenton, speaking for Clague, Bean and Hart: “None of the players you reference engaged in any wrongdoing, all of the players co-operated fully with the independent London Police Service investigation in 2018, and all players were then cleared of any wrongdoing.”
Hart’s agent was one of the first to give a statement to the Toronto Star, but I think Russ said it the best and plenty of Flyers fans agree:
Not sure who’s advising Carter Hart on this one, but essentially hiding behind the statement of an agency or attorney isn’t a great optics win. If you’re innocent, come out like a number of your former teammates and say you’re innocent.
— Russ Joy (@JoyOnBroad) July 20, 2022
An absolutely sickening wrinkle in the whole situation is that Hockey Canada allegedly set up a sexual assault slush fund using hockey players’ registration fees to pay out settlements covering sexual assault claims.