News broke this afternoon that Calgary Flames prospect Michael Ferland has been charged with one count of assault and one count of aggravated assault related to an incident late last month in Cochrane, Alberta, according to the Calgary Sun. Ferland was allegedly involved in an altercation outside of a Cochrane bar on July 29th and is now facing charges relating to that altercation.
The Calgary Flames released a statement today in support of Ferland:
"We were informed today that Michael Ferland has been charged with assault as a result of an incident on July 29th in Cochrane, AB. We met with Michael and are taking steps to acquire information as it relates to the situation. While embarrassed, Michael maintains he is innocent with respect to the charges and he has displayed concern for any harm that has resulted from this incident. The organization will support Michael as he moves through the legal process. As a result of legal considerations, we are limited in the information we can publicly discuss and are unable to provide any further comment at this time. Thank you.
Through his attorney, Ferland also released a statement:
"It upset me to hear that someone might have been hurt and I am embarrassed by these accusations but I trust the court process and look forward to having this situation behind me as soon as possible.”
The Calgary Herald is reporting that Ferland is expected to appear in Cochrane provincal court on September 4.
A native of Brandon, Manitoba, Ferland has been a star with the Brandon Wheat Kings for several seasons and is expected to turn pro with the Abbotsford Heat this fall. He was a fifth round selection of the Calgary Flames in the 2010 NHL Entry Draft and was recently ranked the Flames 7th best prospect by FlamesNation.