Kingston-area MPP Randy Hillier and three of his children are facing charges from OPP after hosting a COVID-19 “mask burning party” at a Kemptville restaurant earlier this month, police confirmed Thursday.
The independent MPP, his daughter Chelsea, and his two sons Dillon and Clayton are all facing Reopening Ontario Act (ROA) charges, OPP confirmed. South Branch Bistro, the restaurant that hosted the event is also facing a ROA charge for the April 8 event.
Hillier has spent the last year railing against COVID-19 measures, and has lately taken to hosting events through his No More Lockdown group that purposely contravene gathering limits. He did not immediately respond to a request for comment on this story.
Global News has not been able to reach the owner of the restaurant, but OPP confirm she has yet to be charged.
On the day of the event, the restaurant posted to Facebook that there was “no evidence that restaurants are spreading COVID” and that the lockdown would have forced them to close their doors for good.
OPP say about 200 people were at the event at the time, and that they received numerous complaints about the party.
The Alcohol and Gaming Commission of Ontario (AGCO) temporarily suspended the restaurant’s liquor licence and also proposed to revoke its licence altogether following the event.
Hillier was recently charged in Aylmer and Peterborough for similar gatherings, and faces a ROA charge from a gathering last year at Queen’s Park.
OPP say the investigation into the incident is ongoing. It’s unclear if any more charges will be laid.