Jian Ghomeshi on Wednesday stood in a Toronto courtroom to apologize and sign a peace bond to avoid a second sexual assault trial.
In return, Crown attorney Michael Callaghan withdrew the final criminal count to bring the high profile sexual assault case against the former Moxy Fruvous pop group member and disgraced CBC broadcaster to an end.
Kathryn Borel, a former producer on Q, a CBC popular culture radio show hosted by Ghomeshi, had alleged she had been sexually assaulted in her Toronto workplace by the former broadcaster in February 2008. Reaching a deal with prosecutors that includes a peace bond allows Ghomeshi to avoid pleading to any guilt and receiving a criminal record.
Borel, in a statement delivered to the media outside the courthouse, alleged she faced constant sexual harassment from Ghomeshi over a three year period while working on the CBC radio show, and that her pleas to management for relief went unheeded.
"When I went to the CBC for help, what I received in return was a directive that, yes, he [Ghomeshi] could do this, and yes it was my job to let him. The relentless message to me from my celebrity boss and the national institution we worked for was that his whims were more important than my humanity. So I came to accept this. And I came to see it was his right."
Borel said her stance changed in Dec. 2014 when she went to the police with her complaint against Ghomeshi and they pressed a sexual assault charge against Ghomeshi.
Ghomeshi rose in the Toronto courtroom to apologize to Borel. Reading from a formal statement, he told his former CBC colleague he had wrongly brought a "sexualized tone" into the workplace. "I was a person in a position of authority and leadership and I did not show my respect... I did not appreciate the impact [it would have]."
Ghomeshi acknowledged that he had breached workplace boundaries. "I understand this now. This is a challenging business to be in and I did not need to make it more difficult for Ms. Borel," he said. Crown attorney Callaghan when outlining the court settlement said Ghomeshi had "created an intolerable working environment for Ms. Borel, which contributed to her leaving CBC."
The peace bond, usually associated with domestic assault cases, requires Ghomeshi to promise to be of good behavior, avoid contact with the complainant for one year and not to hold any weapons. The end of the second trial follows a judge's decision in March that found Ghomeshi not guilty on five other sex assault charges after an initial trial that made headlines beyond Canada's borders.
Judge William Horkins concluded that inconsistencies and at times deception on the part of three complainants led him to doubt the credibility and reliability of their testimony. The Crown has said it will not appeal the verdicts in the first trial.