Colin Perkel, The Canadian Press
TORONTO - The son of Tim Hortons’ co-founder says the sex he had with a woman accusing him of assaulting her aboard a luxury megayacht was “vigorous” but always consensual, and sometimes included other women, according to court documents filed Wednesday.
In a statement of defence obtained by The Canadian Press, Steven Joyce denies attacking Elizabeth Kelly aboard the “Destination Fox Harb’r Too” last October.
He also argues that her $5.75-million lawsuit, which has caused him and his family “profound embarrassment and humiliation,” was nothing more than an attempt to force him to pay her “significant” money.
“Steven and Elizabeth’s sexual relationship included a wide variety of consensual acts, including anal intercourse,” the statement asserts.
“On many occasions, that consensual sexual activity was vigorous.”
Earlier this year, Kelly sued Joyce and his billionaire father Ron Joyce, alleging the son had sexually and physically assaulted her on the yacht in Fort Lauderdale, Fla.
The Toronto woman, who was in Florida to celebrate her 50th birthday, said she and a friend were aboard the yacht at the invitation of the younger Joyce, who is in his late 40s.
According to her unproven claim, Kelly and Joyce were in bed when he invited another female to join them in bed. When the other woman refused, she says, Joyce grabbed the woman and tried to force her onto the bed. In the ensuing melee, Kelly said she suffered serious and permanent personal injuries to her hand.
She also alleges that she and Joyce were leaving the upper deck hot tub later that day when he attacked her.
“Steven Joyce, without warning, suddenly and inexplicably, forced the plaintiff face down on a chaise lounge and subjected the plaintiff to a vicious sexual battery,” her claim states.
In his defence, Joyce says the couple exchanged steamy texts in the days before the encounter “concerning their plans and desires for sexual activity.”
They had consensual sex before and after going for a short cruise, he says.
Kelly injured her wrist — but refused medical attention — when the other woman lost her balance and they accidentally fell on the floor, according to the document.
After that incident, they had sex on the beach and then later on the upper deck of the yacht, he says.
“Elizabeth consented to all of these acts, which were consistent with her and Steven’s past consensual sexual conduct.”
The next day, the pair had supper with friends and again had sex, the statement says.
“During the entire time in Ft. Lauderdale and afterward, Elizabeth never complained to Steven of any alleged sexual assault.”
She had even sent him a text from the airport saying, “miss you love you xo.”
Joyce’s father, Ron Joyce, of Burlington, Ont., is named as a co-defendant because, Kelly’s suit alleges, he didn’t ensure her safety aboard the yacht, which was built in 2008, has six cabins and can accommodate 12 guests and as many crew members.
The suit also names MV Ships Agencies, the Cayman Islands yacht builder also named as an owner of the US$18-million, 49-metre vessel.
Kelly did not pursue a criminal complaint as a “personal choice,” a source familiar with the situation previously told the The Canadian Press.
Kelly’s lawyer, Lenny Hochberg, refused to discuss Joyce’s assertions.
“We stand ready to go to trial,” Hochberg said.