Chris Hoare, a past president of the Ottawa Real Estate Board, was facing financial troubles in 2013 as a result of failing to file his taxes for a number of years. He owed some $200,000 and Canada Revenue Agency was garnishing his entire income.
Hoare began to abuse Oxycontin and was lying to his wife, Kirsten Coté, with whom he welcomed his fifth child in 2011. The situation came to a head in April 2014 when Coté said she was going shopping. Rather than admit their current state of affairs, Hoare said he called his wife to the garage with the intention of knocking her out.
"It would be great if she got knocked out," Hoare told the court of his thinking at that time. "Take her out to the garage. Get a piece of wood. Hit her over the head with it. Tell her something fell."
Last week, the court learned that Hoare repeatedly hit Coté over the head with their son’s aluminum baseball bat, though Hoare said it was only at “less than half my strength.”
Much of the real estate community was shocked to learn of the allegations against Hoare, though some of his colleagues have admitted they’re not too surprised.
“He had trouble keeping staff when he worked at (my brokerage),” says Elaine Smallwood, an agent in Ottawa who worked across the hall from the accused Chris Hoare. “(His staff) didn’t like working with him. He was very demanding, and he wasn’t very sympathetic. He had a bit of an edge to him.”
Hoare was a director of the Ottawa Real Estate Board for six years before becoming the youngest president in 1999. He most recently worked at Paul Rushforth Real Estate, which quickly warned agents that he was no longer a member of the brokerage following his arrest.
The Real Estate Council of Ontario (RECO) confirmed that Hoare no longer holds a license to trade in real estate in the province.
Ironically, Hoare also served for four years as a judge with RECO, according to his LinkedIn profile, “presiding over hearings in which other Realtors are being prosecuted for various offences.”
A former real estate board president currently on trial for attempted murder told a courtroom that he beat his wife to the brink of death in an effort to keep her from shopping.