Report: Penguins accused of covering up coach's alleged sexual assault

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SAN JOSE, CA - JUNE 12: Clark Donatelli of the Pittsburgh Penguins celebrates by hoisting the Stanley Cup after his teams 3-1 victory to win the Stanley Cup against the San Jose Sharks in Game Six of the 2016 NHL Stanley Cup Final at SAP Center on June 12, 2016 in San Jose, California. The Pittsburgh Penguins defeat the San Jose Sharks 3-1. (Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images)
Clark Donatelli hoists the Stanley Cup while the Penguins celebrate. (Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images)

According to TSN’s Rick Westhead, the Pittsburgh Penguins are being accused of encouraging a former assistant coach with their minor league affiliate in Wilkes-Barre/Scranton to “keep quiet” after another former assistant allegedly sexually assaulted his wife in a car on a team road trip.

Jarrod Skalde and his wife, Erin, allege that Clark Donatelli assaulted Erin when the three were taking a car together in November of 2018. The Skaldes say that after the incident was brought to the attention of management several months later at the 2019 NHL Draft — and more specifically to former assistant general manager and the current general manager of the Minnesota Wild, Bill Guerin — that they were encouraged to keep the information to themselves.

Skalde believes he was fired earlier this year because of the complaints he issued against Donatelli, and that the Penguins used cuts related to the COVID-19 pandemic as an excuse to terminate his contract. The Skaldes are seeking damages for physical and mental suffering, and loss of income.

Also in the report, the Skaldes allege that the Penguins were aware of “countless other episodes of inappropriate conduct by Mr. Donatelli, sexual and otherwise” and that the Penguins tolerated his behaviour because “he was a successful coach.”

Donatelli left the Penguins organization for “personal reasons” a week after Skalde brought the allegations to management, while Guerin exited a couple months later when he was promoted to the general manager position in Minnesota.

Guerin apparently declined to comment through the Wild’s public relations team, while the Penguins have filed a motion to dismiss the lawsuit.

Donatelli’s lawyer would not comment, either.

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