by Lance Turner
Posted 10/17/2013 07:37 am
Updated 10 months ago
The Toronto Star on Tuesday follows up on reports out of Little Rock, including our reports here and here, that Canadian millionaire Michael Wekerle is being sued by a Capital Hotel employee after a wild night in Little Rock in 2010.
Wekerle's attorney, Jeff Kehoe, already told Arkansas Business Editor Gwen Moritz that Wekerle was aware of the lawsuit filed by Little Rock lawyers Bud Whetstone and James Swindoll on behalf of a hotel valet, Brooks Jansen.
"He does plan to respond and to defend himself vigorously," Kehoe said, declining to answer any specific questions about the evening, during which Wekerle is alleged to have "caused injury to Mr. Jansen's shoulder and neck when he grabbed Mr. Jansen's arm, twisted it and tugged on it as if he were about to flip Mr. Jansen over his shoulder."
Jansen is seeking $75,000 in damanges.
On Tuesday, the Toronto Star published its report on the incident, including a statement from Wekerle himself:
In a statement emailed to the Star by his lawyer, Wekerle said the incident occurred during a difficult period of his life.
"I had just lost my wife and I still have difficult moments. While I dispute certain parts of the allegations, I acknowledge that on that night three years ago I behaved in a way that I'm not particularly proud of. For that, I apologize. There is a legal process currently unfolding and I am going to let it run its course," he wrote.
The Star report cites a Toronto Life magazine article on Wekerle that noted that Wekerle's wife died of a heart attack in March 2010 at age 39. The magazine said that after her death, Wekerle "began behaving erratically":
Sometimes he would go to work at noon, sometimes not at all. But when he did, he would arrive to the whispers of colleagues who’d heard about his latest late-night shenanigans—dancing like Jagger on the patio at One, say, or driving around town with a car full of women.