Jian Ghomeshi Pleads Not Guilty to Sexual Assault Charges

Jian Ghomeshi Pleads Not Guilty to Sexual Assault Charges
Disgraced former CBC host Jian Ghomeshi has been out of broadcasting for a while now as he faces a serious legal battle. Earlier this year, his lawyer Marie Henein had said that the longtime Q personality would be pleading not guilty to the charges against him, and now Ghomeshi has made this official.

Today (October 1) in a Toronto courtroom, the 48-year-old pled not guilty to four counts of sexual assault and one count of overcoming resistance by choking. His trial will begin on February 1 and will be a judge-only trial, meaning that there won't be a jury.

The Canadian Press reports that Ghomeshi didn't speak with reporters today and said only "not guilty" during the public portion of his court appearance.

Ghomeshi will also have a separate trial on June 6 for a different charge of sexual assault.

Back in May, two charges were dropped from the case. Crown Prosecutor Mike Callaghan said at the time, "We wish to be abundantly clear this determination is not a reflection of the truthfulness or credibility of any witnesses, but rather a determination that specific allegations would not meet the legal burden of proof."

It's been almost a year since the CBC cut ties with Ghomeshi last October amidst allegations of sexual abuse. In the days and weeks that followed, more women spoke out and Ghomeshi was officially charged. Earlier this year, an inquiry found that the CBC "condoned" the host's inappropriate behaviour at work. Ghomeshi has maintained that, although he has engaged in rough sex, everything he did was consensual.

The alleged incidents occurred between 2002 and 2008. Ghomeshi is out on $100,000 bail and must remain in Ontario and live with his mother.

Meanwhile, Shad has taken over Ghomeshi's show Q.