Hedley frontman Jacob Hoggard insists the alleged rape accusation against him was actually a consensual sexual encounter.
Hoggard’s accuser, an unidentified Ottawa woman, told CBC that Hoggard raped her in a Toronto hotel room two weeks after matching on the dating app Tinder.
The woman, described only as a “24-year-old, petite blonde,” first met Hoggard through the app in 2016. Their relationship quickly developed into daily flirting on Snapchat, before the two eventually linked up in the hotel room.
According to CBC’s report, Hedley’s frontman subsequently “raped her and sent her away crying uncontrollably.” She was motivated to share her story “after drawing courage from the dozens of mainly anonymous women who have spoken out on social media about alleged negative experiences with the B.C. band.”
The negative press surrounding the band prompted their withdrawal from the upcoming Juno Awards.
The woman said she did not file a police report out of fear of being publicly shamed. “I didn’t want people to know who I was and associate myself with being the girl that was raped by the singer of Hedley,” she said. “I didn’t want to be that person. And I also thought that because I went there [to see him] nothing would come of it because it was my own fault.
“Even if I agreed to have sex before I got there doesn’t mean when I’m there he can do whatever he wants to me. I feel up until the moment you’re about to have sex with someone, you’re allowed to say no and change your mind.”
She accused him of calling her a “dirty little pig” and making pig noises during the sexual encounter. “I can still to this day picture his face and how scary he looked and how scared I was,” she added. “He was choking me, and my face went so red.”
Hoggard reportedly refused to stop having sex even though she was allegedly bleeding from the anus and vagina. Supposedly the only time he asked for consent was when he asked if he could urinate on her, or vice-versa.
She wrote in a journal entry submitted to CBC, “I feel used. Disgusting. Degraded. I was forced to do things I never have. I never would… Because of who he is, I trusted him. I didn’t think he would hurt me… He knows I said no. I said stop.”
Hoggard unequivocally denied any allegations of sexual assault in a statement provided by his lawyer Brian Shiller. “At no time did Jacob act badly or do anything without [her] consent,” the statement obtained by ET Canada read.
“Jacob met [the woman] on Tinder. They agreed to get together to have sex. She travelled from Ottawa to his hotel in Toronto to be with him for that purpose. They spent the afternoon together and had consensual sex. She went back to Ottawa that same day.
“Jacob is very sorry that [the woman] is upset. But that does not change the fact that they made a mutual plan to get together to have sex and they did just that,” the attorney concluded. “At no time did Jacob act badly or do anything without [the woman’s] consent.”
That isn’t the way she sees it, however. Following Hoggard’s apology statement on Wednesday (in which he says, “I have never engaged in non-consensual sexual behaviour in my life. Ever.”), she spoke with CBC News to share her skepticism.
“I’m just so angry,” said the woman, who wishes to remain anonymous.
“I think he’s only sorry because he got caught,” she added. “There is not a single woman in the world that I know that would consent to being degraded. And that’s what he did to me. He degraded me. I think he needs to understand that consent can be taken away at any point and I think he needs a lesson on consent, actually.”