The world of hockey and the QMJHL in particular went cloudy again on Tuesday when another story of alleged gang rapes by athletes was revealed.
• Read also: Sexual Assault Investigation: Two Victoriaville Tigers Players Arrested
The son of former Canadian badass Shayne Corson, Noah Corson, is accused of sexually assaulting a minor in 2016, along with two youths under the age of 18, including a Drummondville Voltigeurs teammate.
The latter two, whose identities cannot be revealed, have already pleaded guilty in juvenile court.
“Like every time we hear these stories, it’s horrible,” Federal Sports Minister Pascale St-Onge told a news conference. I think that everyone has also understood that we are not in the anecdote and that it really is a culture that is impregnated in the world of hockey, which will require the involvement of everyone. […]because it doesn’t make sense. »
The alleged victim, then 15 years old, would not have consented to a group sexual relationship, whose images would have been captured with a cell phone, according to what Martin Leclerc of Radio-Canada reported on Tuesday.
Photographic archives, QMI Agency
Noah Corson is accused of sexually assaulting a minor in 2016, along with two youths under the age of 18, including a fellow Drummondville Voltigeurs member.
Corson, who was of legal age at the time of the charges and who has denied the charges, is due to appear in court in June. One of his agents, Nicola Riopel, declined to comment on his case. Trunk“Whereas the case is still pending before the court.”
The 24-year-old, born in Sherbrooke while his father wore the CH uniform, was released by his Premier AA Hockey League (ECHL) team, the Adirondack Thunder. He was later called up by the Utica Comets of the American League. But a representative for the New Jersey Devils, the NHL team that oversees the Thunder and Comets, confirmed to Trunk that it was only an assignment in connection with his contract, which should be terminated shortly.
The QMJHL will collaborate
Both the Quebec Major League Youth Hockey (LHJMQ) and then and current Voltigeurs leadership claimed to have been unaware of this matter.
“The QMJHL and its teams will offer their full collaboration to the police investigation and the judicial process if requested,” it can be read in a press release from the league, which insisted on specifying that its “first thoughts are directed to the alleged victim.
Other similar cases
The Courteau circuit has been splashed often in recent months. The Bloc Québécois had invited the Quebec police to analyze new elements in relation to an alleged sexual assault involving four Gatineau Olympiques players in 2014.
Then, two Victoriaville Tigers hockey players face justice for a similar offense committed against a minor last year.
“It’s unfortunate, especially with all the work we do as a league to educate and raise awareness among our players about these social issues,” Maxime Blouin, QMJHL’s director of communications, told TVA Nouvelles.
“We are aware that more prevention must be done,” however, admitted the director of services to players on the circuit, Natacha Llorens, to TVA Nouvelles.
– With the QMI Agency and Jean-François Chaumont
“A long catch up to do”
Director Léa Clermont-Dion found there was “a long time to catch up” when she conducted sexual consent training for some 400 QMJHL players at the start of the season.
“In some cases, they were unaware that when their partner was in an advanced state of drunkenness, they could not have sexual relations with her, because the consent is not valid,” says who underlines the courage of the alleged victim of a group rape allegedly committed by three people, including two former Drummondville Voltigeurs players in 2016.
Léa Clermont-Dion says that hockey players have been very receptive.
“They were happy that we talked about it, without infantilizing them, because they are between 16 and 20 years old, and without making them feel guilty either. I presented them with video clips, including one from the movie I greet you bitch, the passage where we see a victim of gang rape commit suicide. […] It was something that touched their hearts, that shook them. »
the force of war
The author, documentary maker and political scientist believes that it is necessary for these workshops to be renewed every year, but, once again, it is a question of money.
“Political will is needed, funding is needed,” she laments, a day after denouncing the trivialization of sexual violence before the Standing Committee on the Legal and Social Status of Women in Ottawa. Sports organizations cannot be left to their own devices. »
“To change the culture, you need real means. Right now, I think it’s a long time before the federal government really reacts and puts money on the table. There is the line “I have a complaint” created in Quebec with the Sport’Aide organization, but it is not known by everyone. […] If the trainers are not aware, how do you expect them to get the victims to file a complaint? »
” I remain hopeful “
Despite this other scandal and a “toxic” culture that seems well “entrenched”, Léa Clermont-Dion keeps her head up and remains positive.
” I remain hopeful. […] It depresses me a bit, but I think there really is a will to change things. »
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