Blackhawks Ignored 2010 Sexual Assault Accusation, an Investigation Says – The New York Times
2010 Sexual Assault Accusation,
an Investigation Says
According to the report, on May 23, 2010, MacIsaac was told by an unnamed employee that there might have been a sexual encounter between Aldrich and the player. MacIsaac had Jim Gary, the team’s mental skills coach, speak with the player. Gary told investigators he was told that Aldrich was pressuring the player to have sex and threatening that his career would be harmed if he did not.
After the Blackhawks defeated the San Jose Sharks to advance to the Stanley Cup finals, Bowman, MacIsaac and Gary met with John McDonough, then the team’s president; Kevin Cheveldayoff, the assistant general manager; Jay Blunk, the executive vice president; and Joel Quenneville, the head coach.
Accounts of that meeting varied, according to the report, with all participants acknowledging they were informed of an “unwelcome” sexual advance by Aldrich toward the player, but none of them said they were made aware of the nonconsensual sexual conduct the player described in his lawsuit.
Bowman told investigators that during the meeting McDonough and Quenneville “made comments about the challenge of getting to the Stanley Cup finals and a desire to focus on the team and the playoffs.”
No Blackhawks employee would take any action until June 14, five days after the team won the Stanley Cup, and four days after Aldrich made a sexual advance toward a 22-year-old intern and touched him during a celebration of the championship, according to the report.
On June 14, McDonough told the head of human resources about the May incident, according to the report, and two days later the human resources leader met with Aldrich and said that either the team would begin an investigation or Aldrich could resign.
Aldrich chose to resign, and no investigation was conducted then. According to the report, he received a playoff bonus and continued to receive his salary for “several months.” Aldrich also had his name engraved on the Stanley Cup and was allowed to celebrate with it in his hometown, and he received a championship ring and attended the banner-raising ceremony the next season.