Former Olympic Figure Skater Sued For Alleged Sexual Abuse

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Mariane Angela Contributor
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A former Olympic figure skater is facing allegations of sexually abusing two women while coaching at an ice rink, WIS 10 reported.

The unidentified skater is being sued by two women, according to the outlet. The federal lawsuit is targeting not only the coach in question but also the rink and a national figure skating authority in Colorado Springs recognized by the United States Olympic Committee, according to the outlet.

The legal team behind the effort is comprised of Bakari Sellers and Jessica Fickling from the Strom Law Firm, alongside Randall Hood from McGown, Hood, Felder & Phillips, LLC. They brought the lawsuit into the public eye during a press conference Friday. The identities of the coach and the rink have been withheld from the public announcement, the outlet reported.

The allegations include grooming, exploitation, sexual abuse, sexual harassment, rape and sexual malfeasance, according to the outlet.

Victim 2 started taking skating lessons with the accused in 2018 when she was about 13 or 14 years old, according to the lawsuit, WIS 10 reported. During their training, the coach allegedly used inappropriate language towards the minor. The lawsuit also claims the coach allegedly touched her in a sexual manner. She allegedly suffered a mental breakdown after years of sexual abuse and ultimately quit the sport altogether, according to the the outlet. (RELATED: Migrants Who Assaulted NYPD Officers May Be On The Run To California, Cops Reportedly Believe)

Similarly, Victim 1 began taking lessons from the Olympian in August 2020, reportedly experiencing sexual abuse as well, the outlet noted. However, the coach’s alleged actions escalated after the coach persuaded the victim to meet at a hotel, where the coach allegedly raped her, according to the outlet.

Hood lamented the recurring nature of such predatory behaviors and highlighted the failure to address and act upon repeated allegations. “This is just the tip of the iceberg,” Hood said, WIS 10 noted. “There aren’t just two, there aren’t just four, there aren’t just 10, there’s 30, 50, 100 and 200. We don’t know how many have been exploited or for how long or the period of time. They are our heroes; these two ladies are heroes. They are standing on the presidios for everyone else. Because without them bringing this, and bringing it to the knowledge of everyone, it continues unevaded.”