Halifax Regional Police (HRP) are investigating an alleged sexual assault that reportedly involved an Ontario Liberal MP in Halifax attending the National Liberal Convention.
The office of Liberal MP Francis Drouin, 34, who represents the riding of Glengarry-Prescott-Russell, confirmed to Global News that he is the subject of an allegation, though he did not say what the allegation was.
“I would like to address reports of an incident that took place this weekend in Halifax. I can confirm that an allegation has been made. I believe it is important for individuals to have a safe environment to come forward, share their stories, and be supported,” Drouin said in a statement to Global News.
The HRP’s sexual assault investigative team are leading the investigation into the incident that allegedly occurred after 2 a.m. on Saturday, in the 1700 block of Brunswick Street.
The alleged incident occurred in a pub near the Nova Centre, which hosted the Liberal gathering.
Drouin was in a crowded bar when a woman became agitated because she believed someone in the bar grabbed her buttocks, a source who was present at the time and who was near Drouin told Global News.
Drouin allegedly approached the woman to see what had agitated her and was accused by the woman of inappropriately grabbing her buttocks, the source said.
The source believes Drouin did nothing wrong and was mistakenly accused by the victim.
Drouin was in town to attend the National Liberal Convention and the alleged incident occurred on the weekend where Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, along with many other high ranking liberal party members, attended a seminar on sexual violence prevention titled, “From MeToo to never again: creating safe work environments.”
The 34-year-old has been described as a rising star in the Liberal party and even moderated a panel at the convention on Saturday with agriculture minister Lawrence MacAulay
“As part of our victim-centred, trauma-informed approach to sexualized violence, we work closely with victims to ensure they’re willing to proceed with a police investigation, which includes giving a statement about the incident and providing a description of the suspect if possible,” police said in a press release.
“Police must also ensure the victim’s privacy is upheld and well-being is fully considered; sexual assault investigators have been taking these measures since first speaking with the victim.”
Investigators are asking anyone with information on the incident to contact police at 902-490-5020.
With files from David Akin