On Monday July 23th, Jacob Hoggard, the lead singer of Canadian band Hedley was arrested on charges of sexual assault that Toronto Police claim occurred in 2016. The official charges include: Sexual Interference and two counts of Sexual Assault Causing Bodily Harm. Under Criminal Code (R.S.C., 1985, c. C-46), the Canadian legal system defines Sexual Interference is defined as the following: “Every person who, for a sexual purpose, touches, directly or indirectly, with a part of the body or with an object, any part of the body of a person under the age of 16 years.”
The arrest follows several statements shared on social media earlier this year that alleged the lead singers long history of sexual misconduct against women. The initial claims of violence led to radio stations dropping their songs from their programming, the band cancelling the tour being their new album, and being dropped by their management. In the wake of the #MeToo movement, the allegations also sparked a conversation online about violence and art, highlighting the division in conversations.
In the news release, the police “are concerned that there may be other victims” and urge other individuals to come forward.