Nova Scotia

Chester MLA Hugh MacKay subject of court order after series of emails

Hugh MacKay, the MLA for Chester-St Margaret's, has faced multiple charges related to impaired driving. Now, according to court documents, an emergency protection order has been granted against him after a series of threatening emails.

The Independent MLA has faced multiple charges related to impaired driving in the past

Hugh MacKay enters court in Halifax in 2019. (Jean Laroche/CBC)

Hugh MacKay, the embattled MLA for Chester-St Margaret's, is in legal trouble once again.

This time, according to Nova Scotia Supreme Court documents, it is for threatening to harm himself and the recipient of a series of emails sent to that person earlier this month.

A judge has prohibited naming of the victim. But, in an application for an emergency protection order, that person claims MacKay has "alcohol issues" and contacted them by email six times within a 24-hour period "threatening gun violence and self-harm, possible harm to the applicant."

This happened between July 8 and 9. The victim sought the court order on July 10.

The application also noted the applicant and others "fear immediate danger" from MacKay.

The court documents also alluded to a previous history of violence, specifically "verbal abuse" and "emotional abuse" and noted an Oct. 13, 2019, incident where the "applicant passed out in presence of respondent."

In an email to CBC News Friday, MacKay said: "To set the record straight, I have never threatened anyone with violence, with firearms or otherwise."

"I acknowledge that I made stupid emotional remarks," he wrote. 

"There is much more to this loosely stitched together story than meets the eye. There are some very vengeful people out there who embellished the actual events both here and in regard to the DUI charge I am facing."

Past troubles

Last November, MacKay pleaded guilty to operating a motor vehicle with a blood-alcohol level over the legal limit in relation to an incident on Oct. 13, 2019. He was fined $2,000 and prohibited from driving for a year.

The protection order also notes MacKay is facing two criminal charges related to an accusation he drove drunk in November 2018. MacKay has pleaded not guilty to those charges and the case is set for trial in December.

The emergency order is in effect until Aug. 9. Police have seized guns owned by MacKay.

MacKay told CBC News the guns were two old hunting shotguns that were not in his possession, and he willingly directed the police to where they were stored with someone who has a secure gun cabinet.

MacKay has been an Independent MLA since resigning from the Liberal caucus earlier this year.