Former two-time United States figure skating pairs champion, John Coughlin, who committed suicide on Jan. 18, 2019 at his father’s home, was allegedly facing multiple sexual misconduct allegations, some having to do with minors.
Journalist Christine Brennan broke the story in USA Today. She wrote that she was informed by an anonymous source that there were three registered complaints with SafeSport against Coughlin. The first report was made from an individual over the age of 18 on December 17, 2018. SafeSport started an investigation surrounding that case and Coughlin were issued a disciplinary action.
Coughlin responded to the allegations by email to USA Today denying the charge saying it was baseless.
Brennan continued to report within the past month, two more reports were filed with SafeSport. This time, they involved minors accusing Coughlin of sexual misconduct. SafeSport had no choice but to issue an interim suspension on Jan. 17, 2019.
Under the suspension, the skater is unable to participate in any skating competition or activity which involved U.S. Figure Skating or the U.S. Olympic Committee.
U.S. Figure Skating must follow any disciplinary actions issued by SafeSport.
Dan Hill, a representative for SafeSport, told USA Today that it would be unlikely for an investigation to continue after Coughlin’s death. SafeSport’s job is to keep the person who reports an incident safe. With the suicide of Coughlin, the threat is no longer there.
Hill also reported, SafeSport began to receive death threats after the news of Coughlin’s suicide was reported. He also mentioned that SafeSport’s primary concern right now is for Coughlin’s alleged victims and how they are handling the suicide. SafeSport is ensuring the alleged victims receive any support and help the may require.
Written by Barbara Sobel
Edited by Cathy Milne-Ware
Fox News: John Coughlin was facing several sexual misconduct allegations, including two from minors, before suicide: report
Deadspin: Report: Pairs Skater John Coughlin Was Accused Of Sexual Misconduct With Minors
USA Today: Former U.S. skater John Coughlin was facing reports of sexual misconduct before his death
Featured and Top Image by David W. Carmichael Courtesy of Wikimedia – Creative Commons License