, 02.14.2018 08:55 AM

Patrick Brown, P.I. (updated)

Welcome to today’s class in how not to do P.R., folks.  Today’s case study is Patrick Brown, former leader of the Progressive Conservative Party.

Three weeks ago, CTV  broadcast a report that Brown had engaged in graphic sexual misconduct with two very young women.  He denied the allegations of the two young women, but he stepped down a few hours after the CTV report.

His party started a leadership race to replace him.  All of the candidates seem to be a lot more popular than he was.

Three weeks after he resigned, Brown hired a PR firm and started a media tour.  He attacked the young women who made the allegations against him.  The two young women doubled down on their stories, refusing to back off.

I have been told by CTV folks that Brown has not taken steps to sue them or his accusers.  And he’s rapidly running out of time to do so.  In my view, until he serves a Libel Notice, I don’t give a rat’s ass about whatever he has to say.  It’s all spin or bullshit, at this point.

Oh, and this: Patrick Brown has hired private investigators. (UPDATE: These guys, I’m told.)

I found that out on-air, on CFRA on Monday afternoon.  I was on Evan Solomon’s show with Karl Belanger and Alise Mills when Alise said she was working with Brown, and that he had hired private investigators.  Here’s what she said: “Patrick has hired someone to do the forensics, a P.I., he’s got a very strong legal team.”

That was news.

Evan and I started questioning Alise, who I know to be an honest person.  She didn’t walk back her statement.  She stood by it.

To repeat: Patrick Brown has hired private investigators to do “forensics.”  Forensics are defined  as “scientific tests or techniques used in connection with the detection of crime.”

So, whose crime?  And who are they investigating?  There are only three possibilities, because there are only three groups of participants in this sordid tale.

  1. One possibility is Patrick Brown has hired private investigators to do “forensics” on him.  Given that he’s the client, this isn’t highly likely.
  2. Another possibility is that Patrick Brown has hired private investigators to discredit the CTV team who worked on this story.  I’ve been told by two sources at CTV that they think P.I. types are indeed following them around.
  3. The only other possibility is that Patrick Brown has hired private investigators to discredit and attack the two young women who made the allegations in the first place.

Those are the only possibilities.  If it’s either 2 or 3, it is big, big news: a sitting member of the provincial legislature has hired private investigators to go after the media and two young women who claim to have been sexually assaulted. (Another possibility: he’s investigating other MPPs: but that would be a clear violation of their Parliamentary privilege.)

Anyway. If the above is true – if what Alise Mills revealed on Monday is indeed the case – I do not see how Patrick Brown can be permitted to retain his seat.

Digging up dirt on reporters, doing their jobs?  Digging up dirt on alleged victims of sexual assault? Digging up dirt on fellow MPPs?

That’s not the kind of person we need in our provincial parliament.

40 Comments

  1. RDL says:

    Patrick would be well-advised to keep a low profile at the moment. As more and more is being discovered within the party, the picture is looking more and more grim for him.

  2. Robert White says:

    Disgraced former PC Party Ontario leader Patrick Brown will not launch a Libel suit against CTV, or the two women that have accused Brown of untoward behaviour. He knows that they are telling the truth, and he mistakenly thinks if he throws money at the conundrum he can increase his probability of being believed. Clearly, the executive of the PC Party, and CTV, have enough information on hand to stand by their position that Brown acted in an untoward manner that is not befitting of a politician in a leadership position, or even a back bench position.

    Bottom line is that Brown must have enough money to throw around in a wasteful manner on Private Investigations, and Forensic analysis. CTV, and the PC Party, have lots of litigators that are in no way phased by the head fake bluff of Brown and his entourage of hapless gumshoes.

    I am 100% positive that Brown et al. will be seen to be pissing into the wind without a hope or a prayer that Brown will ever be vindicated due to the fact that he is most assuredly guilty as charged in the court of public opinion.
    Brown’s litigators, and gumshoes, all need employment, and are more than happy to be taking his money given that he is truly a greater fool than they are.

    Lastly, in Financial Intelligence it is known that risk travels to those that least understand it. In the case of Patrick Brown we can all safely conclude that he does not understand political risk, interpersonal risk, social risk, public risk, relationship risk, in-group risk, out-group risk, sociological risk, psychological risk, monetary risk, or legal risk.

    clearly, someone needs to explain risks to Brown et al.

    RW

  3. Ron Benn says:

    Patrick Brown may find himself unemployed within the next few months. What will he do to earn a living between May 2018 and 2043?

  4. Miles Lunn says:

    The election is too close for Patrick Brown to realistically prove they are not true. And still it seems like the guy is a creep who you wouldn’t want as premier. His best option is to not run for MPP in the upcoming election and he can sort this out without dragging the public and his party through it. If he is innocent, which is far from certain, he can clear his name and then have a future career in the public sector, but he needs to realize fair or not fair his public image is tarnished so he has no future in politics.

  5. Lyndon Dunkley says:

    As a lawyer and a detail man, does the evolution in the story from “highschool student and underage” to “young woman” bother you? Maybe the difference does not meet the definition of libel, but I do remember the highschool student component of the original story did generate at least part of the warranted outrage.

    • Warren says:

      Everyone seems young to me these days

    • Matt says:

      CTV has just admitted the woman wasn’t underage, so they HAD to change it.

      So, if the accuser lied about that, what other part of he story isn’t true?

    • Robert Viera says:

      Ironically, when Patrick Brown was in high school, had he had attended a public school, he might still have been in high school at his accuser’s age since Ontario still had a 13th grade back then. The Ontario PC government at the time, of which Brown’s uncle was a member, eliminated the 13th grade.

  6. Luke says:

    Hypothetically, if I were Patrick Brown and I was or otherwise believed I was innocent, perhaps the forensic digging I’d have the PIs doing is not to implicate others in crime, but to show that I had done nothing wrong. I suspect you might be reading too much into the word forensics. Maybe Alise just wasn’t being as precise about wording as is your interpretation of those words.

    • Warren says:

      Yeah, it magically is no longer alleged sexual assault because she’s older. Gotcha.

      • Matt says:

        Where did I make a commet like that?

        I posted the headline of the article and the link.

        CTV made sure to emphasize the underage angle in the original story and have now had to admit she wasn’t underage.

        That’s all I pointed out. And naturally yes, some people will begin to question the truthfulness of the rest of her story when she suddenly changes part of her allegation.

        Personally I’d like to see this in court with the accusers and Brown under oath.

        • Warren says:

          I hereby withdraw my I don’t give a shit.

        • Fred from BC says:

          I’m with you. It’s all about credibility, and people who are caught lying (especially when making an accusation this damaging) need to be held accountable; how many real victims might be discredited or refuse to come forward if this woman is proven to be fabricating this whole thing in an effort to get payback on someone she thinks has wronged her? We all know that it happens…many of us know (or have read about) people who have been through an acrimonious divorce or other breakup of some kind, and have been shocked by the lengths some people (male *or* female) will go to to “get” someone.

          I’m not making any judgements about Patrick Brown until I see some actual *evidence* one way or another; a mere accusation shouldn’t be enough to ruin a person, man or woman. That’s been my position all along, because unlike some people who post here I actually believe in due process and the law (yes…even now)…

          • Nicole says:

            Interesting that his own staffers never needed that standard to resign when he wouldn’t. What are the chances they know more than just the CTV stories?

      • Gyor says:

        The allegation was never that he sexually assaulted her in the first place. She never suggested she was forced against her will. It was just a hook up. And then she changed her story which removed the only remotely concerning elements.

  7. Bud McFarthy says:

    This just underscores to me how little he cares about the party. What a pathetic individual.

  8. Fast Times at Barrie High says:

    Nothing I’ve seen or read today changes the fact that Paddy is, at the very minimum, a creepy icky classless little puke. That was well known in Ottawa for eons, as were the ‘icky’ opinion of his frat buddy and partner in hi-jinks Rickie Dykstra.

    Oh, and more bad news for both the PCs just breaking this afternoon.

    It seems that the PC membership list was jacked by the Justice4Brown crew. Thousands of emails went out to PC members via a MailChimp blast this morning from a certain Roger.Mason1962@gmail.com.

    Looks like that party database isn’t so secure after all, eh Vic?

    That pucker sound you’re hearing is coming from up PC HQ down on Adelaide Street.

    News at 11.

  9. Debbie Lindenas says:

    I was recently at a party in Barrie, full of Barrie residents and more voting Conservatives than I’ve ever been around. There wasn’t a Barrie resident who hasn’t heard stories about Brown’s behaviour or seen him in action after event parties, going back as far as when he was a city councillor. Yes, I understand that this is gossip, but I was taken aback by how many different stories were floating around. There were a handful of supporters, but most were happy to be rid of him. It also appears his behaviour was never a secret. Was it ignored because this kind of thing was always ignored? Why would they go ahead with him as a candidate? Seems to me they are well rid of him.

  10. Sean says:

    The conspiracy theorist in me thinks that there are some PC insiders who REALLY don’t want Doug Ford leading the party that are encouraging Brown to fight back. It’s the only thing that makes sense here, at least to me. He’s obviously hearing from party highers-up who are encouraging him to speak out, and I think it’s going to backfire something fierce.

    • Matt says:

      There are rumours suggesting the take down of Brown was an inside job, so I doubt the party HQ are encouraging him to fight back.

      Plus I’ve been told there are many in the OPC very impressed with Ford so far.

      Add to that the recent Campaign Research poll that has all three candidates for leader doing better against Wynne then their polls from when Brown was leader.

  11. P. Brenn says:

    what a mess..surprising to see CTV put McGregor on the case though given his history with Frank magazine and Caroline Mulroney

  12. Matt says:

    New statement from Brown this afternoon in which he basically dares his accusers to go to the police and press chatges, even providing the phone # for Barrie police.

    https://www.facebook.com/servingbarrie/posts/10160218865305106?_fb_noscript=1

  13. Mark says:

    The important thing about #MeToo is the ability to have nuanced discussions.

    If we’re not capable of that, then the movement has no sustainability.

    Nothing Patrick Brown is doing or will do, is going to change the fact that his career is effectively over. There is no vindication for his behaviour because, short of the accusers rescinding their allegations 100% publicly, what Brown allegedly did is still gross and wrong.

    Having said that, its entirely his prerogative to Roy Moore the shit out of this and not accept what he’s accused of. From what I gather, he’s trying to get the women in a court so he can question the veracity of their memory.

    To the extent that details in the CTV story are now being corrected, it does matter. Journalistic factuality absolutely matters in a post Rolling Stone’s Sabrina Erdely world. Minor details are what makes a expose well sourced versus recklessly written. In Browns case, its the difference between gross sexual coercion with an underaged girl to sexual misconduct with a young adult woman.

    Patrick may just be a man out for retribution, but where process-less accusations are followed by swift consequences, the media has total responsibility as the intermediary of information.

    • Pedant says:

      You want nuanced discussion but then a few lines down compare Patrick Brown to Roy Moore??

      • Mark says:

        I’m comparing his reaction to that of Roy Moore’s.

        It’s too bad you’re too stupid to have caught the nuance in that.

        • Pedant says:

          Introducing Roy Moore’s name into the discussion invites a comparison of the allegations and not just the reactions.

          Besides which, the reactions aren’t even comparable. Brown is meticulously challenging very specific details, in some instances backed up by counter witnesses. Roy Moore’s counter consisted of rambling that the accusers were planted/paid by the media and political opponents and getting his wife to tell reporters that he is a man of God.

          It’s too bad you have to fling lame insults online that you would be too cowardly to utter in person.

    • Sean says:

      If he’s so eager to get them into court, send them a libel notice. Why wait for them to file charges?

      • Mark says:

        Not a lawyer, so I have no idea how these kinds of things unfold.

        From my understanding, if he files a libel notices than the onus of proving libelous intent is on Patrick, whereas if charges were laid and the women were put on stand as witnesses/victims, then his lawyer could put their version of the story to question (onus being on the Crown to prove guilt).

        Kind of like the Ghomeshi trial.

        The issue here seems to be that there is enough truth in the allegations that Patrick Brown won’t send them a libel notice and there’s not enough detailed evidence for the women to press charges for something serious. Our legal system is woefully unfit to deal with these situations.

    • Richard says:

      Pedant is spot on. You’re assuming that what “Brown allegedly did”, he did, whether to someone under drinking age (who apparently claims to have followed him home from a bar), or to an adult, because it turns out she’s already admitted the parts that were provably false in her accusation… were false.

      You wrote: “In Browns case, its the difference between gross sexual coercion with an underaged girl to sexual misconduct with a young adult woman.”

      No it’s not. And that’s not nuanced. It’s cutand dried: he’s guilty, as far as you’re concerned, because he was accused — anonymously (bravely).

      Actually, in Brown’s case it’s the difference between sexual coercion of a woman who falsely accused him of doing something that, several years later and only then, she says felt was sorta kinda unwelcome and like pressuring or something (back when she was drunk and remembered everything else sooo clearly and accurately)… and him having been pursued and kissed (sexually assaulted, technically, if he didn’t give consent) by a woman whom he and other witnesses report, he promptly escorted safely home to sleep off her case of self-induced alcoholic bad judgement.

      There’s a bit more room for “nuance” now.

  14. SmallTownON says:

    I too have heard a truckload of rumours dating back to PB’s time as Barrie MP; in fact, the night he was chosen as party leader, a good friend of mine from that neck of the woods called me and said, “they have no idea what they’ve just done.” A good number of PC folks just didn’t do their homework on this guy, or chose to turn a blind eye.

    What’s also kind of interesting about this is I live nowhere near Barrie, Toronto or Ottawa (places where these rumours likely flew the thickest) and they’ve been whispered HERE for the better part of a decade. I’m like, WAY remote, y’all.

    I’m thinking, therefore, that this is a case of where there’s smoke, there’s fire.

    Finally, the “P.I.” pushback through the press and Facebook might also be a tactic designed to dissuade what could very likely be MANY more women from coming forward to tell similar stories and further sully Patrick Brown.

    He’s playing offense now to limit the chances of having to play “D” again in the future.

  15. Kidran Mienko says:

    What’s that you say, Warren ol’ boy? Brown won’t sue CTV? That’s funny, cause he is…

    And you don’t want honest people in our provincial government, just unscrupulous ones?

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