The hockey world is still reeling from the shocking story from former Chicago Blackhawks forward Kyle Beach, who came forward publicly to reveal his identity last week and give more details of the sexual abuse that he suffered at the hands of a video coach that went unaddressed by the team. The fallout has been massive, as GM Stan Bowman and former head coach Joel Quenneville resigned their respective positions.
And now, the NHL has another bombshell on their hands.
The Pittsburgh Penguins are set to be facing a lawsuit from Erin Skalde, who is the wife of former AHL affiliate Wilkes-Barre Scranton Penguins assistant coach Jarrod Skalde; team owners Ron Burkle and Mario Lemieux as well as former assistant GM Bill Guerin are said to be named as defendants.
What's the reason for the lawsuit? Erin Skalde will reportedly be alleging that former Wilks-Barre Scranton Penguins head coach Clark Donatelli sexually assaulted her during a team road trip to Providence, RI in 2018.
Take a look at the re-telling of the allegations from TSN's Rick Westhead, who also interviewed Beach last week.
“After the Skaldes and Donatelli had dinner together following a game on Nov. 11, 2018, and prepared to return to their hotel, the Skaldes allege in their claim that Donatelli sexually assaulted Erin when they were briefly alone, first putting his arm around her, calling her “sexy” and pulling her close to him.“
“Mrs. Skalde tried to fight off his sexual advances and told him to stop, but to no avail, as Mr. Donatelli escalated his attack, including reaching his hands into Mrs. Skalde’s shirt and repeatedly touching her breasts,” the lawsuit alleges.”
“Skalde returned to his wife and Donatelli a few minutes later and they took a car-ride service back to the hotel. Donatelli insisted that he sit in the back seat with Erin for the ride, and that Skalde sit in the front“Still in shock and uncertain what to do in response to her husband’s boss sexually assaulting her, Mrs. Skalde fearfully entered the back seat of the car, trying to put as much distance between herself and Mr. Donatelli as she could, to avoid him again sexually touching her,” the lawsuit says.“
“Mr. Donatelli resumed his sexual assault and battery of Mrs. Skalde once he had her in the darkness of the backseat. He not only groped her breasts again, but also forced his hands down her pants and touched her vagina, despite her efforts to push him away… Only later did Mr. Skalde find out what happened to his wife that night, shaking him to the core to learn that he had sat unknowingly in the front seat as his boss has sexually assaulted his wife.”
As shocking as that all is, what's equally as bad is the fact that then Pittsburgh Penguins assistant GM and now Minnesota Wild GM Bill Guerin allegedly ignored Skalde and eventually fired him without cause.
“Skalde alleges that seven months later, when the incident was brought to the attention of Penguins’ assistant general manager Bill Guerin, whose duties included overseeing the NHL team’s AHL operation, Guerin told Skalde to keep quiet about the alleged assault. He alleges the NHL team has violated Pennsylvania’s whistleblower laws and fired him on May 5, 2020, because he complained to the team.”
– – Quotes via TSN Link – –