8 women now accuse Jian Ghomeshi of violence, sexual harassment: report
CBC radio host Jian Ghomeshi is shown in a handout photo. (THE CANADIAN PRESS / CBC)
A total of eight women, including a Canadian TV actress, have now come forward with allegations of abuse at the hands of Jian Ghomeshi, the Toronto Star reports.
In a report published online Wednesday night, the Star said the allegations range from beating and choking to sexual harassment.
Lucy DeCoutere, who is known for her role in the TV series “Trailer Park Boys,” agreed to go on record. She told the newspaper that during a 2003 date with the radio host, Ghomeshi allegedly choked her to the point she could not breathe and then slapped her repeatedly.
“He did not ask if I was into it,” DeCoutere is quoted as saying. “It was never a question. It was shocking to me. The men I have spent time with are loving people.”
Other allegations reported by the Star are from women who didn’t want to be identified. The incidents of the abuse range from 2002 to the present.
The women said the violence was not consensual.
The Star said it approached Ghomeshi, his lawyers and public relations staff with the allegations, but had not yet responded.
The latest revelations reported by the Star come two days after lawyers for the 47-year-old radio broadcaster filed a $55-million lawsuit against the CBC on Monday, alleging breach of confidence, bad faith and defamation by the public broadcaster after he was fired from the show.
On Sunday, days after announcing that Ghomeshi would be taking time off from his hit arts and culture radio show ‘Q,’ CBC issued a statement saying the corporation was parting ways with the host due to “information” it had received about him.
Hours later, in a lengthy Facebook post, Ghomeshi accused the CBC of firing him for sexual behaviour between consenting adults, which included rough sex and BDSM.
Ghomeshi explained that his firing came after he had approached the CBC to disclose his sexual preferences and relationship history only after he became aware of a “campaign of false allegations pursued by a jilted ex-girlfriend and a freelance writer” that the radio host engaged in non-consensual abuse.
The lawsuit claims the CBC had told Ghomeshi that they believed the allegations of abuse to be false. The suit further alleges that Ghomeshi was subsequently terminated because of “possible negative public perception” over his sexual behaviour.
"Mr. Ghomeshi would not have shared information about his private life with the CBC, had he appreciated that the CBC would ultimately use the information provided to it to terminate his employment," the suit says.
The CBC says it plans to contest the matter. None of the allegations have been proven in court.
The lawsuit also elaborated on Ghomeshi’s claim over Facebook that a woman with whom Ghomeshi engaged in consensual role-play and BDSM had fabricated a story of abuse after he had ended the relationship.
"The woman is suspected to have approached a reporter and others to share a fabricated story about her relationship with Mr. Ghomeshi, which recast their relationship as one where she did not consent to the sexual activity in which they repeatedly engaged," the suit says.
On Sunday night, hours after lawyers announced Ghomeshi would be suing the CBC, the Toronto Star reported that three women had alleged that Ghomeshi was physically abusive without their consent both during sex or in the lead up to sex. The women had not reported the alleged incidents of abuse, the Star reported, because they feared they would be sued or face backlash online from the public.
In response, a lawyer for Ghomeshi told the Star that he doesn’t engage in non-consensual role play or non-consensual sex “and any suggestion of the contrary is defamatory.”