Former Victoria restaurant employee arrested for Ontario sexual assault charges

A former employee of the now closed Chuck's Burger Bar in downtown Victoria has been arrested in connection with sexual assault allegations linked to Ontario.

Jesse Chiavaroli, 41, was arrested for six counts of sexual assault by the Burnaby RCMP detachment on B.C.'s Lower Mainland on June 2, on behalf of Hamilton Police.

According to Hamilton Police, Chiavaroli has been transported from Burnaby to Hamilton for a bail hearing following a lengthy investigation linked to restaurants and bars in the Ontario city.

Hamilton Police say they believe that there may be other victims in Ontario, and encourage any survivors to contact the Hamilton Police sexual assault unit at 905-540-5553.

The police department says that Chiavaroli worked in the restaurant and bar industry in the Niagara Falls and St. Catherines communities from 2009 to 2015, and in Hamilton from 2015 to 2018.

In Victoria, Chuck's Burger Bar was rocked by multiple allegations of sexual assault against Chiavaroli at the beginning of 2021 from both customers and employees.

In February, the restaurant said it was unaware of the allegations until they surfaced online, at which point they fired him. Chuck's said it did receive a written complaint from a staff member about the man in 2019 but that the situation was resolved at the time and Chiavaroli was reprimanded.

Allegations and protests continued to mount against the restaurant and in February, Victoria police told CTV News that its investigation was interprovincial, with ties to Ontario.

"We are pleased to see Hamilton Police’s work in combatting sexualized violence," Victoria police spokesperson Const. Cam MacIntyre told CTV News on Tuesday. "Our investigation into allegations of sexualized violence associated to a downtown Victoria bar and grill continues." 

Chiavaroli has not been charged in connection with any of the allegations made in Victoria.

None of the allegations in Victoria or Ontario have been tested or proven in court.