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Mendel: She Honored Singer Headley – Until He Raped Her At 16

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She suspected Jacob Hoggard might try to kiss her when they met in Toronto on September 30, 2016, but the 16-year-old, who had the naive confidence of young men, was sure he would respect her if she said no.

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But the person she met that day wasn’t the same sweet, sweet pop-rock musician who’d been flirting with her for six months in lovable messages and Snapchats and who called her to wish her her sixteenth birthday, she said.

On Friday, she claimed that this man was a “monster”.

In harrowing testimony, the balanced young woman described a brutal sexual assault that she allegedly took place at the Toronto Airport Sheraton Hotel over a period of several hours as Headley ignored her cries to stop, calling her a “dirty whore, smelling of weed and cigarettes,” they spat in her mouth, slapped her face, and repeatedly raped her – leaving her repeatedly. Bleeding and bruising.

Hoggard, 37, listened with little expression.

Hedley frontman Jacob Hoggard is pictured during a show in Grande Prairie, Alta, on February 9, 2018.
Hedley frontman Jacob Hoggard is pictured during a show in Grande Prairie, Alta, on February 9, 2018. Photography by Joshua Santos /Postmedia News

He pleaded not guilty to sexual interference with the girl when she was 15 and sexual assault causing bodily harm. He also pleaded not guilty to sexually assaulting a second woman a few months later. Their identities are covered under the embargo.

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An agreed-upon statement of fact says that Hoggard had a “sexual encounter” with the complainants when they came to his hotel – suggesting that it was consensual.

“I cry and tell him to stop, it hurts. No, I don’t want to do this. And he just keeps going, he’s not responding,” remembers the young woman, who didn’t go to the police until 2018.

“He says ‘You’re mine now, and your p-y now, you filthy little bitch, you slut, you like that. Yeah, that’s what you deserve.'”

Then she paused in her testimony, her voice breaking as she fought back tears.

“Sorry,” she continued. “He says all these things as I lay there, crying on my back, telling him to stop. And he won’t stop.”

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She allegedly tried repeatedly to keep him away, but he caught her.

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“It kind of shut down,” she cried. I can’t fight this. I’m too weak compared to him. I can’t physically fight him to get him away from me. So it was just, ‘Okay, I just need to survive at this moment. This is what will happen.”

She testified that she kept telling him to stop but her focus became surviving.

“I just needed to get out of the hotel room at the end of it,” she said. “For me, in that moment, to be able to get over it, I just had to mentally shut myself down.”

Canadian musician Jacob Hoggard appears before Judge Gillian Roberts as his wife Rebecca Asselstein (left) and attorney Megan Savard (right) look at this artist's drawing in Toronto on Wednesday, May 4, 2022.  Alexandra Newbold/The Canadian Press
Canadian musician Jacob Hoggard appears before Judge Gillian Roberts as his wife Rebecca Asselstein (left) and attorney Megan Savard (right) look at this artist’s drawing in Toronto on Wednesday, May 4, 2022. Alexandra Newbold/The Canadian Press

At one point, she claimed, Hoggard climbed over her and demanded that she confess that she was his. I refused to answer.

“He slapped me in the face and said ‘Who is this?'” And again, I don’t reply as he spits in my face and says, ‘You’re mine now.’

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She claimed that Hoggard then opened her mouth and spat in it.

“I spat on him again and he slapped me in the face again afterwards, he opened my mouth again and he spat again in my mouth.”

Headley captain Jacob Hoggard left 361 University Avenue Courts on Friday, May 6, 2022.
Headley captain Jacob Hoggard left 361 University Avenue Courts on Friday, May 6, 2022. Photography by Veronica Henry /Toronto Sun / Postmedia Network

During the two-hour assault, she claimed Hoggard rolled over on her stomach and stuck her head into the pillow so she could hardly breathe. She told the jury that he forced her to have oral sex and tried to rape her anally but to no avail.

She thought she was meeting him at his hotel for lunch and a day out on the town with the singer she’s been into since she was eight years old.

“This guy is totally bipolar and the opposite of what I knew him to be,” she testified. “That person who makes you believe this fairy tale of love, romance, softness and gentleness with this ruthless and unsympathetic human beast, is vulgar and aggressive in both its formulation and physical actions.”

When Hoggard finally went to the bathroom, she got her phone, texted a friend and told her to call and pretend she needed to come early for work. She asked for a car and he slowly started to get back to the person she knew, she said, and told the teen how happy he was that she came and he couldn’t wait to see her again.

“who are you?” I remembered thinking. “I never want to talk to you again. You’re probably going crazy thinking I’m seeing you again.”

The questioning of witnesses, which began Friday afternoon, continues on Monday.

mmandel@postmedia.com

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2022-05-06 22:58:06

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