As Hedley frontman and alleged predator Jacob Hoggard approaches the Canadian judicial system for his numerous counts of sexual misconduct, the band’s ex-drummer Chris Crippin shared details in an interview with CBC that further contextualized the band within a history of problematic and predatory behaviour.
Crippin describes the meet-and-greets the band held with its often young, often female fanbase as a breeding ground for these attitudes and behaviours, claiming that these interactions were characterized by Hoggard being “overly-touchy” and using objectifying greetings such as “Hey, you f**king sluts, how ya doing?”
This problematic language informed plenty of Crippin’s interactions with Hoggard, with the former drummer also describing a number of other alleged “jokes” of Hoggard’s which seemed to be underlined by an unapologetic penchant for offense, including a valentine’s card depicting a lynched black man, a picture of male genitalia resembling the twin towers that read “9/11. Never Faget” (a word Crippin says Hoggard often referred to him by), and an email with management in which Hoggard joked that the band were nominated for Junos in the categories of “AIDS, Rape.”
Crippin, who was fired from the band last year, claims his attempts to address these questionable attitudes within the band were met with ignorance not only from his fellow bandmates (“I would get ridiculed or bullied into some kind of, just, you know, ‘Shut the f–k up’ kind of thing.”) but also management itself (“I felt alone, let’s just put it that way”).
The ex-drummer’s details regarding his time in the band, specifically the alleged culture of ignorance and misconduct within it, has been met with similar reactions as to when he brought these issues up before his firing, with representatives for the band dismissing his comments as “out-of-context allegations made by a disgruntled and bitter former member of our group, whose axe-grinding and bias against us should be obvious to any fair-minded observer.”
Allegations began in February of this year, with the social media hashtag #OutHedley2k18 leading to numerous stories emerging that brought to light an alleged history of sexual misconduct within the band, specifically centering around frontman Jacob Hoggard, who is currently facing sexual assault charges from two women, one of whom was underage during the alleged incident.