WARNING: This story includes graphic details some readers may find disturbing.
A Thunder Bay, Ont., judge is expected to release her decision this afternoon in the trial of two former University of Ottawa hockey players facing sexual assault charges from a 2014 incident.
Guillaume Donovan and David Foucher were charged with one count each of sexual assault related to a hotel incident after a Gee-Gees away game against the Lakehead University Thunderwolves in February 2014. Both have pleaded not guilty.
The identity of the complainant is protected by a publication ban, which also prevents CBC News from reporting the names of some witnesses and certain details of the trial.
During the trial in February, court heard the Gee-Gees were celebrating an overtime win and had drinks in their connected hotel rooms before a group headed to a local bar.
The complainant had used a Tinder dating app to message a Gee-Gees player who was to be Donovan’s roommate on the trip, and the pair met at the bar.
The woman, 21 at the time, and Donovan’s roommate returned to the West Arthur Street hotel where the team was staying and began to have consensual sex.
Some Gee-Gees players had returned from the bar and continued to drink and watch TV in the adjoining hotel room, which was connected by an unlocked door.
At this point, the testimony begins to split on questions of who said what if anything, who was involved and whether there was consent.
Naked men entered room
The young woman said that at some point she noticed a group of naked men entered the hotel room and two players forced themselves on her.
She told court she remembered saying she didn’t want that. She was speaking to the player she had met on Tinder, and who had left the bed.
She identified one of the men as having red hair, a deep voice and a French accent, like team captain David Foucher, who she had briefly met outside the bar.
‘I don’t want this to happen’: complainant testifies at Gee-Gees sexual assault trial
In her testimony, she said the first man who forced himself on her encouraged her to perform oral sex on the second man. When he spoke, he said the second man was her Tinder date’s roommate, who court heard was Donovan.
The roommate testified that Donovan had approached the bed while he and the woman were having sex and no words were exchanged before she began performing oral sex on Donovan.
He said he then went to the adjoining hotel room and was in the washroom, and didn’t see anything else happen.
Accused deny allegations
Donovan said his roommate had asked the woman if she was OK for a threesome and that she had agreed. But, Donovan said, he never spoke directly to the woman.
He said her eyes were open during their sexual encounter and she didn’t resist. He said he stopped and turned the lights on when she pressed on his hips.
Donovan said he didn’t realize Foucher was in the room until he turned on the light and saw that he was hiding behind one of the other beds in the room.
Foucher denied ever having sexual contact with the woman. He said he and some other players had been challenging each other during a night of rowdy partying, eventually deciding to enter the room as a prank.
The plan had been to make some observations for jokes in the adjoining hotel room, Foucher said.
Defence calls complainant liar
Both defence lawyers attacked the woman’s credibility and pointed to how her story changed from what she told the friend who picked her up from the hotel, to her police interviews and court testimony.
Donovan’s lawyer, Christian Deslauriers, said the complainant created a half-dozen versions of events and it raised serious questions about reasonable doubt.
He said the woman was trying to protect her reputation after being embarrassed about agreeing to a threesome.
Celina Saint-Francois, who represents Foucher, said the identification of her client was weak since so many of the other Gee-Gees players were francophone, bigger than the complainant and the room was dark during the alleged incident.
In his closing arguments, Crown lawyer Marc Huneault said the issue of consent in the subjective mind of the complainant is at the heart of the prosecution’s case.
He argued the court is only required to believe the complainant on two facts: that she did not consent and that there were two men who assaulted her.
Court also heard testimony from the complainant’s friend who picked her up from the hotel that night, former Gee-Gee player Mathieu Leduc and former Gee-Gee coach Real Paiement, who lost his job over the handling of the incident.
Judge Chantal Brochu presided over the two-week trial. Her decision is expected at 2 p.m. today.