TORONTO — Jacob Hoggard, the frontman for the Canadian band Hedley, was convicted Sunday of sexual assault causing bodily harm to an Ottawa woman but acquitted of the same charge involving a teenage fan.
Hoggard, 37, was also found not guilty of sexual interference, a charge alleging the sexual touching of someone under 16, in an incident involving the same teen fan when she was 15.
The singer hugged his wife in the courtroom after the jury’s verdict was read.
Prosecutors alleged Hoggard groped the teen after a Hedley show in Toronto in April 2016, and then raped her in a Toronto-area hotel room later that year after she turned 16. They alleged he raped the Ottawa woman in a Toronto hotel in November 2016.
Both complainants testified they were left bleeding and bruised. Both of the complainants claimed that Hoggard had slapped and spit on their faces, called them names and restricted their breathing.
During the roughly month-long trial, Hoggard testified his memory of the encounters wasn’t clear, but he said that he had consensual, “passionate” sex with the complainants and that he didn’t touch the teen sexually until after she turned 16.
“I knew when she turned 16,” Hoggard testified, adding he made sure “to be responsible and not break the law. “
He denied choking or restricting the complainants’ breathing, but said some of the other things they described were among his sexual preferences and therefore could have happened.
The jury began deliberating Tuesday and twice indicated it was deadlocked on “some” counts. The jury was asked each time to continue trying. The jurors were asked to repeat the majority of Hoggard’s testimony and several legal questions, such as the definition of consent.
Hoggard’s band, Hedley, rose to fame after he came in third on the reality show “Canadian Idol” in 2004.