Shocking details in Chicago Blackhawks lawsuit alleging 2010 sex assault revealed by lawyers

Brad Aldrich, Blackhawks' former video coach, also accused by Kyle Beach

ByRob Hughes and ABC7 Chicago Digital Team WLS logo
Monday, November 6, 2023
Lawyers reveal shocking details in Hawks suit over 2010 sex assault
Lawyers provided new details about a Chicago Blackhawks lawsuit alleging sexual assault by former video coach Brad Aldrich.

CHICAGO (WLS) -- Lawyers revealed new details about a new sexual assault lawsuit filed against the Chicago Blackhawks.

Romanucci & Blandin attorneys, who filed the suit on behalf of their client, who remains anonymous, spoke publicly for the first time on Monday.

In a Chicago Blackhawks lawsuit, an ex-player alleges sexual assault by Brad Aldrich, the former video coach who Kyle Beach also accused of abuse.

The lawyers detailed the suit against the Blackhawks for concealing sexual abuse and harassment of a former player, who is only listed as John Doe, during the team's 2010 Stanley Cup-winning season.

"This case is about institutional negligence at its worst," said Antonio Romanucci. "We are here today because a Chicago Blackhawks hockey team coach abused his superior power of authority and sexually assaulted a player and member of his own team."

Just 19 and 20 years old at the time, John Doe played for the Blackhawk's AHL affiliate in the 2009-2010 season, and was called up to be a member of the organization's "Black Aces" roster. That's when the lawsuit claims then-video coach Brad Aldrich used his authority to "groom, harass, threaten and assault John Doe for sexual gratification."

Aldrich was seen lifting the Stanley Cup even after team employees were allegedly were made aware of his wrongdoing.

"That is morally disgusting that they allowed that to happen. They knew and they allowed it. They let it continue. Other people became victims because of the Blackhawks' laziness and because they placed winning over everything," Romanucci said.

The complaint goes into detail, alleging Aldrich offered to pay for John Doe to receive sexual favors if Aldrich could watch, that Aldrich sent explicit pictures of himself to John Doe, and that Aldrich surprised and attempted to join John Doe while he was being intimate with a woman by rubbing John Doe's feet.

Aldrich texted John Doe that he could perform sexual favors on a man better than any woman, the suit says. He also allegedly arranged for massages for John Doe, hosted pool parties and played pornography.

The lawsuit also says Aldrich threatened John Doe's career if he ever reported him.

The alleged transgressions happened during the same time period as those involving former Blackhawk Kyle Beach. Beach ended up settling in December of 2021 after an independent investigation found the team did not act quickly on his claims.

"That's what gave him the courage. People say, 'Oh, this is a money grab.' It's not," Romanucci said.

The Blackhawks acknowledged the new lawsuit, pointing to the independent investigation they ordered in 2021 and saying that the organization has rebuilt its leadership team, reporting mechanisms and added new training for all employees.

Meanwhile, John Doe's attorneys say their client left the Blackhawks organization within a year after that 2009-2010 season and has been playing overseas since.

Romanucci told ABC7 his client is not in this for a settlement. They say they are serious about taking this case to a trial. They expect the Blackhawks to ask for an extension to respond to this lawsuit, so the case likely wouldn't move forward until early 2024.