Ex-Canucks player Jake Virtanen found not guilty in sexual assault trial

Jul 26 2022, 6:20 pm

After a trial that lasted a week long, a jury has found former Canucks player Jake Virtanen not guilty of sexual assault.

Virtanen was charged with sexual assault in January of this year.

The BC Prosecution Service had initially approved one count of sexual assault against Virtanen in January, who was 25-years-old at the time, in connection with an incident that occurred back in 2017 while he was playing in the NHL.

In a statement to Daily Hive, the BC Ministry of the Attorney General said, “while this is not the result we advocated for we respect the process and the work done by the jury in this case.”

The victim, who was simply called MS in court proceedings, was 18-years-old at the time of the alleged incident.

An investigation into the allegations was launched in May 2021, and the Canucks  subsequently suspended Virtanen.

Virtanen was due to make $3.4 million USD last season, but was bought out by the Canucks in late July at one-third of his $3 million base salary.

The 25-year-old from Abbotsford never played another game for the Canucks after he was placed on leave on May 1, when sexual misconduct allegations about him became public.

With files from Rob Williams

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