A former Michigan high school hockey player has sued the Chicago Blackhawks in a second civil complaint tied to sexual assault allegations against former video coach Bradley Dale Aldrich.
In a complaint filed May 24 in Cook County Circuit Court, the plaintiff, identified in the lawsuit as John Doe 2, alleges that neglect by Hawks management allowed Aldrich to continue working in hockey circles and led to Aldrich sexually assaulting him in March 2013.
In relation to that 2013 assault, Aldrich on Feb. 13, 2014, was sentenced to six months in jail and five years of probation, and he registered as a sex offender.
According to the filing, on March 6, 2013, John Doe 2 was 16 years old and a hockey player for Houghton High School in Houghton, Mich., where Aldrich was an assistant coach.
“At an end of season gathering for the players, Aldrich provided alcohol to the then-minor plaintiff and performed oral sex on the plaintiff without his consent,” the lawsuit says.
Hawks vice president of communications Adam Rogowin said in a statement Wednesday: “As this is a pending litigation matter, it would be inappropriate for us to comment.”
John Doe 1, a former Hawks player from the 2009-10 team that went on to win the Stanley Cup, sued the Hawks on April 30 seeking $150,000 in damages based on claims Aldrich “turned on porn and masturbated in front of him,” then “threatened to injure (him) … physically, financially and emotionally if the plaintiff did not engage in sexual activity.”
That suit also alleged team mental skills coach James F. Gary dissuaded the player from pursuing disciplinary action against Aldrich.
The Hawks said the allegations “lack merit.”
Susan E. Loggans, the attorney for both cases, told the Tribune another former Hawks player, a witness in John Doe 1′s case, also complained to the team about Aldrich.
Based on the Hawks’ alleged handling of the 2010 complaints, the latest suit alleges the Hawks acted with “utter indifference or conscious disregard for the safety of others” when they failed to properly investigate or fire Aldrich, “provided positive references to future employers … despite having knowledge of his sexual assaults,” and failed to report Aldrich to any hockey or coaching organizations.”
Loggans said Wednesday: “The Blackhawks, by failing to document and acknowledge that this guy was a sexual predator and investigate and tell potential later employers, they subjected other people to be later victimized by him and caused this child to be on one of his teams. And he molested him and pleaded guilty to it.”
Loggans said her client’s mother contacted her about two weeks ago about filing a lawsuit.
The suit list damages of “in excess of $50,000,” a clerical limit set for Cook County filings, but in terms of the actual amount that will be sought, Loggans said, “We have to wait and see what the full damages of this person turn out to be. But this is a lifetime injury with significant recovery.
“We have to wait and see how all the psychological treatment is.”
Loggans said the Hawks were served notice on the John Doe 1 suit a week ago and anticipates a response from the team within three weeks.