Carter Hart, Hockey Canada sexual assault case back in court August 13 – NBC Sports Philadelphia

The trial in the sexual assault case involving Carter Hart and four other players on the 2018 Canadian junior team is not expected to start anytime soon.

No start date for the trial was set in court on Tuesday, a spokesperson for Ontario’s Superior Court told NBC Sports Philadelphia. The case will return to court for criminal adjudication on August 13, the same day Hart turns 26 years old.

As reported in April, it appears the trial won’t begin until after the 2024-2025 NHL season begins. TSN correspondent Rick Westhead reported Tuesday that “due to the backlogs in the courts, it is doubtful that the trial against Hockey Canada will begin before the end of April 2025 at the earliest.”

The Flyers open training camp in September and the regular season in October. A regular NHL season typically ends around mid-April. The possibility of Hart returning to the ice at any point next season is looking increasingly unlikely.

The goaltender is a restricted free agent this season. It is uncertain whether the Flyers will have to make Hart a qualifying offer this month to retain his rights while the legal process plays out in court. According to a source, the Flyers have not made a decision on that front as they wait for guidance from the NHL.

Hart has been away from the team since Jan. 23, when he requested and was granted an indefinite leave of absence.

On February 5, London, Ontario police announced they had charged Hart, Dillon Dube of the Flames, Cal Foote and Michael McLeod of the Devils, and former NHLer Alex Formenton with sexual assault, stemming from an incident in June 2018.

A week after Hart left the Flyers, his legal representative stated that “he is innocent and will provide a full answer to this false accusation in the proper forum, a court of law.”

At Danny Briere’s season-ending press conference on April 19, the general manager did not have any update on Hart’s status. The Flyers plan to head into camp with Samuel Ersson and Ivan Fedotov forming their goaltending tandem.

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