Miami University reviewing tenure of former hockey official accused of sexual assault elsewhere

Miami University officials said Thursday they have hired an independent legal firm to investigate allegations a former member of the school's hockey coaching staff may have abused players. The statement comes in the wake of media reports that Bradley Aldrich - who was also a former NHL Chicago Blackhawk assistant coach - has been sued by two former players who alleged sexual abuse by Aldrich. Miami's hockey teams play in Goggin Arena, pictured, on the school's main Oxford campus. (Provided Photo\Journal-News)
Miami University officials said Thursday they have hired an independent legal firm to investigate allegations a former member of the school's hockey coaching staff may have abused players. The statement comes in the wake of media reports that Bradley Aldrich - who was also a former NHL Chicago Blackhawk assistant coach - has been sued by two former players who alleged sexual abuse by Aldrich. Miami's hockey teams play in Goggin Arena, pictured, on the school's main Oxford campus. (Provided Photo\Journal-News)

A former member of the Miami University hockey program is now the subject of a school investigation after reports of allegations of sexual assault by two former NHL players have surfaced about his career outside of Miami, according to Canadian and Chicago media reports.

Bradley Aldrich, who was hired as Miami’s director of hockey operations in July 2012 and resigned five months later, is now the focus of a review by attorneys hired by Miami, school officials said Thursday.

“Miami University is aware of allegations of improper conduct by former employee Bradley Aldrich,” said Jessica Rivinius, spokeswoman for Miami.

TSN, a Canadian sports TV network, reported in May that a former NHL player filed a lawsuit in Chicago against the Blackhawks NHL franchise accusing Aldrich of abuse.

TSN also reported that “a second lawsuit filed in May by a former Michigan high school hockey player, identified in court documents as John Doe (2) alleges the Blackhawks covered up the abuse of two players and gave Aldrich a letter of reference when he left the team in the summer of 2010.”

TSN reported Aldrich was convicted of abusing a then-17-year-old hockey player in Houghton, Mich., in 2013.

Aldrich resigned from his position as director of hockey operations at Miami University on Nov. 27, 2012, “under suspicion of unwanted touching of a male adult,” the university’s attorney told police, according to police records obtained and reported by TSN.

Rivinius said Miami has “hired the national law firm of Barnes & Thornburg LLP to conduct an independent and thorough review of Mr. Aldrich’s employment at Miami.”

She said “Mr. Aldrich was employed by Miami University from July 2012 to November 2012, when he resigned. University employees undergo a background verification, which includes a criminal records check, as part of the hiring process.”