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Chicago Blackhawks beginning settlement talks with prospect who alleged sexual assault

Chicago Blackhawks' Kyle Beach controls the puck in the first period of a preseason NHL hockey game against the Dallas Stars in 2008
Associated Press/Tony Gutierrez

The Chicago Blackhawks are reportedly set to meet for settlement talks this week with the attorney of the former player who filed a lawsuit against the team for its allegedly negligent response to his allegations of sexual assault against former coach Brad Aldrich.

According to a letter obtained by the Chicago Tribune, Blackhawks CEO Danny Wirtz has instructed his legal team to reach a “fair resolution” with former player Kyle Beach.

“Danny Wirtz and his father, Chairman Rocky Wirtz, are interested in arranging a direct conversation with Kyle so that they can each personally apologize for the manner in which the Blackhawks handled the allegations brought to the organization in 2010 and express their commitment to attempt to resolve this matter in a fair and equitable manner,” the letter read, according to the Tribune.

The team invited Beach to offer times this week to meet and informed his attorney Susan E. Loggans that they will not oppose a motion she filed last week to amend the complaint against the team.

However, the team asked that a “60-day stay of all litigation matters” be put in place in order to facilitate a settlement.

Beach, who was unidentified at the time, filed a lawsuit against the Blackhawks earlier this year, alleging that the team enabled Aldrich’s conduct when he joined the team in 2010. Aldrich allegedly masturbated and watched pornography in front of the players and threatened to “physically, financially and emotionally” hurt them if they did not engage in sexual acts with him.

Aldrich was convicted of fourth-degree criminal sexual conduct with a minor in 2013.

In an emotional television interview last week, Beach came forward as the player who filed the lawsuit. He said he decided to do so in order to “put my name on this” and to send a message to other people in the sports world who have suffered from abuse that they are not alone.

After the law firm Jenner & Block LLP was commissioned by the team to conduct an independent review into the allegations this past summer, it released a report last week corroborating much of Beach’s allegations. 

Blackhawks general manager Stan Bowman resigned the same day the report was released.

Tags Chicago Blackhawks National Hockey League Sexual assault The Chicago Tribune

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