Brown accuser wasn’t underage
CTV acknowledges key detail false as former PC leader vows to clear his name
Key aspects of a CTV News story that made damning sexual misconduct allegations against former Ontario PC leader Patrick Brown appear to be unraveling.
Brown resigned as party leader in late January after the news broadcaster published claims that Brown tried to pressure two young women, one a high school student and the other an intern in his office, into unwanted sex.
CTV acknowledged Tuesday night a pivotal accusation — that Brown plied an underage high school girl with booze — is not true. The accuser was neither in high school nor underage, she now admits.
Postmedia has interviewed people connected to Brown and the two women making allegations against Brown, and dispute key claims made against him.
CTV said in a Tuesday story that “The first accuser maintains the incident happened during a visit to Brown’s home with a mutual friend,” adding “That friend told CTV News he has no recollection of the night.”
However, when contacted by Postmedia the friend insisted he wasn’t with her that night or with her ever at Brown’s home.
“I have known (her) since I was 16,” said the friend, who didn’t want to be identified because of the virulent controversy surrounding the story.
“I was actually very good friends with her,” he said. “We met through church at a youth group there.”
The friend said he was contacted by CTV Tuesday afternoon, and was told the woman claimed she had been “partying ” with him and another friend on the night Brown pressed her for sex, an allegation he adamantly denied.
“I don’t know if he suggested I had been drinking, but I would dispute any allegation I was drinking at the time,” the friend told Postmedia. “Quite simply I didn’t start drinking until a little bit later in life.”
The friend, who Brown describes as an “acquaintance,” said it’s true he told CTV he had “no recollection” but also made it clear that if the events the accuser described happened, he was never there and had no knowledge of them.
Nor has he ever seen Brown or the young woman together.
“I have no recollection of her interacting with Patrick at a bar or elsewhere,” he said.
Brown’s second accuser, who worked as a summer student in his office in 2013, said he fed her drinks following a Barrie hockey fundraiser, kissed her without her permission and tried to pressure her into sex in his bedroom during a party, which she described to CTV as a “sexual assault.”
“The next thing I know he’s kissing me,” she told CTV. “He continued to kiss me and he laid me down on the bed and got on top of me,” she said.
“I could feel his erection on my legs when he was on top of me so I felt that it would have gone to sexual intercourse if I had not done anything,” she said. “I would characterize that as a sexual assault.”
A woman who knows the second accuser told Postmedia that she admitted at the time that the “encounter with Patrick (had been) just a kiss, nothing more.”
But the day after that alleged assault, the staffer confided to her friend “there was just a kiss, nothing more.”
“She did not intimate to me that it was inappropriate or unwanted in nature at all and she also expressed regrets that she had been unfaithful to her boyfriend at that time.”
“I asked her if it was going to be awkward with Patrick Brown and she said no.”
Brown has maintained the former staffer, who has admitted she was drunk at the time, in fact kissed him.
Other sources at Brown’s home that night, who had gathered there following a charity hockey game in Barrie previously told Postmedia that the young woman had been following him around at the party.
Mikaela Patterson, who was dating Brown at the time, was in the next room in fact.
Patterson said she and a girlfriend noticed the young woman following Brown around at the party.
“We went back to his house and the girl was kind of following him around which annoyed me,” she said. “And then Patrick ended up driving her home... and he spent the rest of the evening with me and Katie, my girlfriend.”
The former staffer also told CTV that she received a raise following the incident, which is suggestive of a payoff.
However, sources with knowledge of Brown’s Barrie operation said in fact it was the former staffer who came looking for a raise, after learning a new crop of interns were being paid as much as she was making, despite having worked in Brown’s office for longer. On that basis, she asked for, and was given a raise.
Brown, in an exclusive interview with Postmedia on Friday, called the allegations against him “absolute lies” that have devastated both his career and personal life. He said the “truth will come out” and that he’s contemplating legal action to defend his reputation.
“CTV News fabricated a malicious and false report about me from two anonymous accusers,” Brown said in a Facebook post. “After a long three weeks, CTV News has now admitted that it got it wrong.
CTV has said it stands by its story, calling Brown’s public concerns about their story as “groundless and wrong.”
Brown first accuser, through CTV, also said she’s standing by her story. The second accuser told Postmedia she’s doing the same.
CTV News acknowledged Tuesday that a pivotal accusation against former Ontario Progressive Conservative leader Patrick Brown, pictured, is not true.