Halifax police continue investigation into sexual assault allegations related to 2003 WJC team
Content Warning: The following article contains references to sexual assault.
The Halifax Regional Police continue to investigate a historical sexual assault that is alleged to have occurred in the city during the 2002-03 World Juniors tournament and involved multiple members of Canada’s team, a police spokesman said.
“The matter remains under investigation,” Constable Nicolas Gagnon wrote to TSN in an email on Wednesday.
A person familiar with the matter told TSN that Halifax police have committed “significant” resources to the investigation and have continued in recent weeks trying to contact witnesses who may have information to share about the allegations.
On July 22, 2022, Halifax police said they would investigate allegations about the 2003 World Juniors team after Conservative MP John Nater, then a member of the Standing Committee on Canadian Heritage, told TSN he planned to ask Hockey Canada to respond to allegations that more than a half-dozen players on the team were recorded during the tournament sexually assaulting a woman who was naked and non-responsive.
Nater, who represents the southwestern Ontario riding of Perth-Wellington, said he spoke with a source who said they viewed a six- or seven-minute video of the alleged incident in the spring of 2003, several months after the tournament was held in Halifax.
The source who contacted Nater works in the hockey industry and said the video began with a Team Canada player standing outside of a room, answering questions as if he were doing a pre-game interview with the person holding the camera, who is not identified.
TSN independently interviewed the source who contacted Nater and corroborated their account with two additional sources, including the owner of the video camera used to film the alleged incident. The sources requested anonymity because they said they fear recriminations.
The player told the camera operator that viewers were about to see "a f---ing lamb roast,” the three sources said.
The video shows roughly a half-dozen players taking turns assaulting a woman who was non-responsive and lying face up on a pool table, the sources said.
Two of the three sources told TSN they were interviewed by Halifax police in late 2022. The third source did not respond to questions about whether they were cooperating with the investigation.