By STEPHEN WHYNO, AP Hockey Writer
The Chicago Blackhawks are holding a briefing Tuesday to discuss the findings of an investigation into allegations that an assistant coach sexually assaulted a player in 2010.
Team owner Rocky Wirtz, CEO Danny Wirtz and former federal prosecutor Reid Schar, who led the investigation, are expected to speak. The Blachhawks press release about the briefing made no mention of president of hockey operations and general manager Stan Bowman, who TSN said was involved in a meeting 11 years ago that informed officials of the assault team.
The Blackhawks have pledged to release the findings of the investigation, with which Bowman, former Chicago coach Joel Quenneville and others who were in the organization at the time agreed to cooperate.
Two lawsuits have been filed against the Blackhawks: one alleging sexual assault by assistant coach Bradley Aldrich during the team’s Stanley Cup run in 2010 and another filed by a former student Aldrich was convicted of of assault in Michigan. Aldrich left the Blackhawks after the 2009-10 season.
A former player said Aldrich assaulted him and the team did nothing after letting an employee know. The lawsuit, filed May 7 in Cook County Circuit Court, alleges that Aldrich also assaulted another unidentified Blackhawks player. The former player who filed a lawsuit claiming over $ 150,000 in damages is mentioned in the document as “John Doe”.
The eight-page lawsuit says Aldrich, then a video coach for the Blackhawks, “turned on porn and began to masturbate in front of” the player without his consent. He says Aldrich also threatened to injure the player “physically, financially and emotionally” if he “did not engage in sexual activity” with him.
According to TSN, two Blackhawks players told then skills coach Paul Vincent in May 2010 of Aldrich’s inappropriate behavior. Vincent said he asked mental skills coach James Gary to follow up with players and management.
Vincent was called for a meeting with Bowman, then team president John McDonough, director of hockey Al MacIsaac and Gary the next day, TSN reported, and said he asked the team to report the allegations. to Chicago Police, a request that was denied.
In addition to leading Chicago’s hockey operations department, Bowman is USA Hockey’s general manager for the Beijing Olympics. It was not immediately clear whether USA Hockey intended to address Bowman’s status pending the outcome of the investigation.
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