Jacob Hoggard's Trial Pushed To April
Hedley frontman Jacob Hoggard’s trial on sex charges, which was scheduled to begin Monday, has been postponed until April 12.
The 35-year-old singer was granted a delay because he has a new lawyer. Hoggard chose to face a jury and jury trials in Toronto have been suspended until February due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Hoggard, who was charged in July 2018, has pleaded not guilty to two counts of sexual assault causing bodily harm and one count of sexual interference. He is accused of sexually assaulting two women on separate occasions in 2016. One of the alleged victims was under 16, the age of consent.
Accusations of inappropriate behaviour with female fans began to surface online in early 2018, causing Hedley to be dumped from the Juno Awards and the band’s songs to be scrapped from radio playlists.
A statement from the band at the time called the allegations “unsubstantiated” and said “there are at least two sides to every story.” Admitting they previously “engaged in a lifestyle that incorporated certain rock and roll clichés” they insisted “there was always a line that we would never cross.”
Hoggard later said in a statement: “I have never engaged in non-consensual sexual behaviour in my life. Ever.” But, he admitted that he hasn’t treated women well. “For this,” he said, “I am truly sorry.”
Hoggard tied the knot with Rebekah Asselstine on New Year’s Eve 2018. He was previously married from 2005 to 2009.
The B.C. native placed third on the second season of Canadian Idol before breaking out as frontman for Hedley. The band released seven studio albums between 2005 and 2017 that spawned hits like "On My Own," "Cha-Ching," "Kiss You Inside Out" and “Perfect."
Hedley has been on "an indefinite hiatus" since the end of its Cageless tour in March 2018.