TORONTO – Jacob Hoggard, the frontman for the embattled Canadian rock band Hedley, is being investigated by the Toronto police sex crime unit as allegations continue to plague the singer.Police spokeswoman Katrina Arrogante said Friday she could not provide specifics of the allegations, but said no charges have been laid.In a statement last month, Hoggard and the Vancouver-based band said Hedley will be taking an “indefinite hiatus” after the end of their Canada-wide tour March 23.The two-time Juno winners and former MuchMusic darlings have been under fire since sexual misconduct allegations began surfacing online last month, suggesting inappropriate encounters with young fans.Hoggard also faced allegations including groping and making inappropriate sexual remarks to a Calgary radio host seven years ago.A 24-year-old Ottawa fan of the band alleged to the CBC in February that she was sexually assaulted by Hoggard after chatting with him on the dating app Tinder and agreeing to meet him at a hotel in Toronto.Hoggard’s lawyer Brian Shiller said in a statement at the time that Hoggard and the woman had “made a mutual plan to get together to have sex and they did just that.”Shiller was not immediately available for comment on the Toronto police investigation.In his own statement last month, Hoggard said he has never engaged in non-consensual sexual behaviour, but acknowledged he “behaved in a way that objectified women” and was “reckless and dismissive of their feelings.”“I understand the significant harm that is caused not only to the women I interacted with, but to all women who are degraded by this type of behaviour,” Hoggard said. “I have been careless and indifferent and I have no excuse. For this I am truly sorry.”The CBC published another report Friday of a Toronto woman who alleges Hoggard tried to force her to do things without her consent during a sexual encounter in 2016.The musician denied the allegations last week after the broadcaster informed him that another woman had come forward.“I did not engage in any sexual activity without her consent,” he said on Twitter. “The allegation is startling and categorically untrue. It is not within my capacity as a person to force anyone beyond their boundaries.”In the fallout since allegation first surfaced, the group has been dropped by its management team, blacklisted by scores of radio stations and abandoned by musicians booked as tour openers.Hedley also withdrew itself from consideration for the Juno Awards and backed out of performing on the telecast.
TORONTO – Toronto police say they will withdraw their application to march in the city’s Pride parade after event organizers said the presence of uniformed officers would make members of the LGBTQ community feel unsafe.Chief Mark Saunders says in a statement that he hopes the move “will be received as a concrete example” of the fact that he is listening closely to the community’s concerns.The announcement comes a day after Pride Toronto and other LGBTQ community groups posted an open letter online asking police to withdraw from the parade.Pride Toronto executive director Olivia Nuamah says the organization wants police to better communicate with the community rather than focus on participating in the summer parade.Nuamah notes that the force’s handling of several high-profile deaths connected to the city’s gay village, including the disappearances of six men allegedly murdered by an accused serial killer, have shaken the community’s relations with police.