Lawyers make closing submissions in sex assault trial for former Vancouver Canuck

VANCOUVER — A defense lawyer for former Vancouver Canuck Jake Virtanen says the woman who claims he sexually assaulted her nearly five years ago wasn’t a reliable or trustworthy witness.

VANCOUVER — A defense lawyer for former Vancouver Canuck Jake Virtanen says the woman who claims he sexually assaulted her nearly five years ago wasn’t a reliable or trustworthy witness.

Brock Martland told the British Columbia Supreme Court jury in closing arguments that there were inconsistencies in the evidence she gave at trial, while that wasn’t the case with Virtanen’s testimony.

Martland says even if jury members are left not knowing who to believe after hearing all of the evidence, they must deliver a verdict of not guilty.

Virtanen denied in testimony last week that he sexually assaulted the woman in his downtown Vancouver hotel room in September 2017.

He told the court the woman had been an “enthusiastic participant.”

The 23-year-old woman, whose identity is protected by a publication ban, testified that she repeatedly said no to Virtanen, but he used his body weight to pin her down on the bed.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published July 25, 2022.

The Canadian Press

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