In a new interview with Exclaim, former general manager of London, ON music venue The Embassy, Rob Bazinet claims that Juno Award-winning band Hedley were allegedly investigated for drugging an underage fan after a performance in 2005.
Bazinet recalls the concert took place on September 18th, 2005. “All day, they were jerks to everybody,” Bazinet recalls. “The way they treated women and fans and even the bar staff was horrendous.”
He continues, “We were an all-ages venue. So we would have people as young as 14 at concerts. Now, with the Hedley show, they knew that going in. I made it very specific that they knew, and that we had black X’s on the hands for minors so that if they wanted to buy drinks for girls or flirt with girls, we gave them the knowledge of age and below age. So they knew this going in.”
Following the performance, Bazinet noticed that one of the bedroom doors in the green-room apartment above the venue was closed.
“I went up as part of my job to see if everything was okay, make sure that none of our equipment was up there accidentally, make sure the rider had been fully fulfilled and that the night was over,” he says. “When I got up there, I went to check — and usually I’d check the whole space — but one of the bedrooms had the door shut. And I went to go check it, and the rest of the band got in the way.”
Bazinet doesn’t recall which band member was in the room at the time, but he claims the remaining members stopped him from entering the bedroom. “The feeling I had at the time was that I would’ve had to force my way into that room.”
Following that encounter, police found a “young woman, unconscious with no shoes” a block from the venue. “They took her to the hospital, they ran a blood test on her because they thought she might be drunk or on drugs, and it came back that there was rohypnol [date rape drug] in her system,” Bazinet recalls.
The police linked the girl to the Embassy because of the X on her hand, but refused to release the girl’s name when Bazinet reached out for a report of the incident.
“From what I understand, the girl was underage. So her name is sealed. But there’s a police report from that night that says Hedley is the suspect.”
The hashtag #outHedley2k18 surfaced on Twitter earlier this week and has since featured numerous stories from fans alleging sexual misconduct against members of Hedley. Since then, the Juno Awards canceled their performance at this year’s ceremony at Vancouver’s Rogers Arena on March 25th, cross-Canada tour openers, Neon Dreams left the tour, Watchdog Management and the Feldman Agency dropped them as clients, and the band released a statement saying in part, “there was a time, in the past, when we engaged in a lifestyle that incorporated certain rock and roll clichés.”