Reny Gagnon, the campaign director for Laval mayoral candidate Claire Le Bel's Option Laval party, was allegedly attacked Monday night. Le Bel said Tuesday morning that she's scared and has asked for police protection.
Le Bel spoke to the media Tuesday morning and confirmed Gagnon was confronted and roughed up by two men the night before. She said an investigation into it had been launched.
According to Radio-Canada, the incident happened after Gagnon left work for the day. He was driving on Highway 40 when got a flat tire. He took the next exit to check it out, and was then intercepted by two cars. Two men got out and assaulted Gagnon.
Provincial police say they received a complaint about an incident that happened on Highway 40 last night, but would not confirm the nature of that complaint. Sûreté du Québec Sgt. Benoit Richard said police will be investigating.
Le Bel did not speak at length about the assault, but did speak about the recording she released to the media yesterday that demonstrates Gilles Vaillancourt contacted her about her campaign.
She said she got a call on her cellphone on Aug. 13 from a man she later recognized as Vaillancourt, the former mayor of Laval and her former boss.
Vaillancourt is facing multiple charges including gangsterism, fraud and corruption.
Le Bel said he wanted to meet the same day in a café, which she didn't attend. She said Vaillancourt called later, insisting on a meeting and said he would come to her house that evening.
She said he told her he had information crucial to her campaign. She said she refused, but then spoke to her party and agreed to meet Vaillancourt in her office — so that she could secretly record him.
She said the meeting lasted for about 50 minutes, during which Vaillancourt grilled her on her party's financing and whether she had recruited all her candidates.
She said he offered her financing for her electoral campaign.
This morning, she said the gangsterism charges Vaillancourt is currently facing made her especially suspicious of his offer to help.
“It’s rare to want to finance a party out of kindness," Le Bel said.
Le Bel said she went to police, Operation Hammer and the Quebec corruption inquiry with the recording, but was told it wasn't a priority.
Her party's top brass decided to release it to the media because, Le Bel said, she thought it would be strange to not mention it during the middle of an election campaign.