EXCLUSIVE: Timothy Hutton will not face Canadian justice for an alleged sexual assault after prosecutors in our northern neighbor have decided to close the decades-old case on the Oscar winner.
Earlier this month, the Crown Counsel in British Columbia told the Vancouver Police Department that a “no charge” decision had been rendered in the claims by Sera Dale Johnston that Hutton raped her in 1983. Citing a lack of evidence available to the quasi-judicial entity and based on the province’s Prosecution Service’s charge assessment guidelines policy, the prosecutors did not believe that they had sufficient material for “a substantial likelihood of conviction” against Hutton.
The then-22-year old Ordinary People actor was accused in a November 2019 filing of attacking the then-14-year-old in a local hotel room while another man looked on and participated. While Hutton was in Vancouver 38 years ago making the Iceman movie, the actor has always insisted he “never assaulted Ms. Johnston.” In fact, Hutton himself has alleged that he was the subject of an extortion attempt for millions of dollars.
Similar to when the LA County D.A.’s office finds a report from the LAPD on a criminal matter lacking the necessary heft to go to trial, the July 7 no charge decision by BC Crown Counsel terminates the investigation into Hutton and what did or did not happen almost 40 years ago.
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“Timothy Hutton has officially been cleared by law enforcement of a criminal complaint filed against him,” the actor’s U.S. lawyer Joshua Rosenberg told Deadline. “The Canadian authorities scrutinized the matter and found a glaring lack of support and proof of Ms. Johnston’s claim,” the Kinsella Weitzman Iser Kump Holley LLP attorney added of the allegations that received wide media coverage last year.
The Santa Monica-based KWIKH worked in conjunction with Vancouver firm Peck and Company representing Hutton in this case
Meanwhile up in Hollywood North, The VPD did not respond to Deadline’s request for comment on the status of the matter. However, Vancouver’s Finest now consider the case over, a well-positioned source says.
Written out of the recent Leverage revival because of the claims and Canadian probe on this side of the border, the WME-repped Hutton took his allegations of extortion by Johnson to the FBI. As is their practice, the Bureau will not officially confirm or deny any investigation. Yet, the extortion investigation is actually still open and ongoing, law enforcement sources inform Deadline.
Complicating the situation somewhat is the fact that representatives for Hutton and Johnson reached a tentative settlement agreement several years ago. The plan was The Falcon and the Snowman star would pay Johnson $135,000 to make the matter go away and avoid the spotlight of the media and the courts. However, with Hutton vehemently denying the attack ever took place, the deal fell apart as the parties realized they had distinctly different ideas of what the payment’s intent and implications were. To that end, Hutton never paid out a dime for any settlement.
Added to that, Hutton’s then attorney Tom Clare of Alexandra, VA firm Clare Locke LLP had said in a March 2020 statement that his client was contemplating suing BuzzFeed for publishing a story on Johnson’s allegations.
That defamation suit has not been filed as of yet.
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