Mike Ribeiro’s sexual assault civil case with his former nanny has been settled, his lawyer announced Thursday. But the graphic and horrifying nature of the allegations towards the Predators forward and his wife won’t be easily forgotten.
The news comes from J.R. Lind of the Nashville Post:
The court-appointed mediator filed a report with the court late Wednesday afternoon saying that an eight-hour mediation July 6 resulted in a settlement of the suit.
The terms of the settlement were not disclosed.
"This civil matter has been amicably resolved without incurring further time-consuming and potentially costly litigation," Ribeiro's attorney, Brian Lauten of Dallas' Deans & Lyon, said in a statement to NashvillePost.com. "I am unable to discuss any of the elements of this confidential resolution. Mike looks forward to continuing to play hockey at a high level and looks forward to aggressively pursuing a Stanley Cup alongside his teammates. The Ribeiro family will not have any further comments on this matter."
Per the Post, the Predators released a statement, which was again deferring to the legal process. The alleged assault of the then-teenaged nanny, took place before Ribeiro signed with Nashville last summer, though the Predators said they did have knowledge of the case when they brought Ribeiro to Nashville.
"The organization understands Mike Ribeiro has resolved his civil case. We are pleased that Mike and his family can focus on their future and we will have no further comment."
Predators general manager David Poile indicated that since it’s not a criminal case, it's not the same.
“It’s a civil case. You can’t comment on it, and I don’t want to comment on it either. It’s a legal process. This is obviously real unfortunate when somebody says something and, again, it’s allegations. Again, I talked to Mike a couple of weeks ago about these situations, and they’re trying to resolve this as best possible.
Poile no-commented on the matter at the NHL Draft before his above media offensive June 30, when he answered multiple questions from local reporters on the matter.
Via the Post again:
“We just wish this would go away and hopefully it will,” Poile said. “I’m not a lawyer and I’m not qualified to say any more than I’ve said. All I can say is that talking to the Ribeiros, talking to the NHL, talking to law enforcement people we are comfortable with where this situation is.
Lind penned the importance of hearing the charges out, regardless of the type of case. A settlement isn't an admission of guilt, but the charges should be taken seriously.
Though part of a civil complaint, which has a far lower standard for bringing suit than do criminal charges, these are, it should go without saying, very serious allegations. Ribeiro and his alleged victim deserve their day in court, and certainly, the allegations could be found wanting.
You can read about the disturbing allegations here via On the Forecheck.
Nashville re-signed Ribeiro to a two-year $7 million contract this offseason, preventing him from hitting unrestricted free agency. The prior summer they signed him to a one-year $1.05 million deal coming off a buyout from the Arizona Coyotes for “behavioral issues.”
Look, everyone deserves a second chance, or third chance if they’ve shown they’re ready to change. Ribeiro has publicly been open about his past and his desire to move forward. As we’ve said before, Poile is generally cautious on moves in regards to players of questionable character. Dude generally does his homework.
But at the end of the day, the Predators didn’t have to bring him back. They have a talented team and he was a 35-year-old unrestricted free agent.
And then they went to the mat for him in spite of the allegations, which include this:
She did not scream because she did not want to wake the children who were in the bed right next to her. Mike was fully clothed and wearing a suit. His hand was on her breasts and he was pleasuring himself at the same time.
Though the case was settled, that’s an unforgettable image for all the wrong reasons.
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