Defence suggests complainant in Jake Virtanen sex assault trial was interested in his money

Questions from the defense on day two of hockey player Jake Virtanen’s sexual assault trial hinted that the complainant was interested in the former Vancouver Canuck for his money.

Virtanen, 25, is charged with sexual assault in connection with an incident that occurred in his hotel room at the Westin Bayshore hotel in Vancouver on September 26, 2017. He has maintained his innocence. mine.

The complainant’s name, identified as MS, is covered by the publication ban.

During the cross-examination, Virtanen’s attorney Brock Martland challenged the picture of non-consensual sex portrayed by Crown on the first day of the trial, noting that MS had lost her job shortly before she gave it. filed a civil lawsuit against Virtanen.

“I was going to suggest that at that point in your life you are worrying about your financial situation,” says Martland.

“No, I didn’t,” she replied.

MS testified that she was not attracted to Virtanen the night they first met at the Calgary Stampede in July 2017 because he was too drunk.

“Seeing him drunk doesn’t have much of an appeal to me,” she said.

The jury watched a short video filmed at a Calgary home that same night that showed MS holding a silver bowl that Virtanen was throwing at. Martland also said that Virtanen had urinated on her own.

“He’s basically making himself a drunkard fool,” says Martland. “I would suggest to you that you know him as an NHL player and that you are getting close to him because you care about him.”

“No,” MS said.

“You know that NHL players generate substantial income,” Martland said.

“No,” MS said.

Former Vancouver Canucks striker Jake Virtanen has been charged with sexual assault in January 2022. (Rich Lam / Getty Images)

MS testified that she had very little awareness of the NHL and the NHL players. She says she didn’t know who Virtanen was when she met him.

When asked by Martland if she’s ever tweeted about the NHL, she replied, “I don’t think so. Likely.”

Martland later created a copy of a tweet posted on August 14, 2020 from her Twitter account, “F – k Bo Horvat.”

Bo Horvat is the captain of the Vancouver Canucks.

“I’m not sure why that came up, what it is,” MS said. “I don’t remember tweeting it.”

Later in court, MS asked for clarification, saying she sent the tweet in response to something a friend told her about Horvat.

Martland challenged MS about why she followed him to his hotel room on the night of the alleged assault.

“I’m 18,” she said. “I’m not confident enough to say something… I trust him to just hang out.”

Martland then asked MS to explain why she slept in the same bed as Virtanen after the alleged attack had taken place.

“Why would you go to bed with a rapist?” he asks.

“Because I feel obligated,” MS said. “In my state, I was so scared and didn’t know what to do, I didn’t think it through.”

Canucks bought out the contract

MS first went public with the sexual assault allegation in April 2021 in a story she wrote for the Instagram account Survivors Story Project. Neither MS nor Virtanen have been named.

A few days later, she gave an interview to a reporter from Glacier Media, who identified Virtanen as the alleged perpetrator in a published story.

On May 1, 2021, the Vancouver Canucks placed Virtanen on leave. Two months later, the club bought him out of his contract. Virtanen played for Spartak Moscow in the Russian Kontinental Hockey League last season. He was charged by Vancouver police in January 2022.

Virtanen hails from Abbotsford and was drafted by the Canucks in 2014. In October 2020, the team signed a two-year contract extension with him worth US$5.1 million.

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