May 12, 2014 4:03 pm

Winnipeg councillor staying on the job despite assault allegation

A former National Hockey League player who now sits on Winnipeg city council is facing an assault charge. Thomas Steen has not yet been formally charged, but turned himself into police and was released on a promise to appear.

Global News

WINNIPEG – A Winnipeg city councillor and former NHL star says he’s staying on the job, not taking a leave of absence as first thought.

Elmwood-East Kildonan Coun. Thomas Steen, who gained fame as a member of the Winnipeg Jets in the 1970s and ’80s, was arrested for assault after an alleged incident involving a female complainant May 1 at a restaurant on McPhillips Street. He was released by police on a promise to appear later in court.

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Steen had sent an email to fellow city councillors last week indicating he would be taking some time off to deal with a personal matter. But in a statement emailed to media Monday, Steen said he had already resumed his duties.

“I would also like to be clear that I have not taken a leave of absence from my duties as councillor and the various roles and functions that I perform as city councillor and have returned to my duties, other than the Winnipeg Police Board,” Steen wrote.

Steen is one of two councillors on the new police board but can’t attend its meetings while under police investigation.

Steen has made no public comments about the allegations, and he said that isn’t going to change.

“As you know I cannot comment on allegations that were reported in the media last week since the Winnipeg Police Services needs the time and the freedom to consider this matter. I have retained legal counsel on this matter and he has advised me to not comment on this,” Steen said.

CORRECTION: This story previously said Steen had been charged. He wasn’t formally charged until May 29.

© Shaw Media, 2014

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