Blackhawks File Motion to Dismiss Kyle Beach's Negligence Lawsuit

Paul KasabianFeatured Columnist IIDecember 3, 2021

HALLE, GERMANY - NOVEMBER 16: Kyle Beach of TecArt Black Dragons Erfurt skates against the Saale Bulls Halle during the Oberliga Nord match between Saale Bulls Halle and TecArt Black Dragons Erfurt at Sparkassen-Eisdom on November 16, 2021 in Halle, Germany. (Photo by Martin Rose/Getty Images)
Martin Rose/Getty Images

The Chicago Blackhawks have filed a motion to dismiss former player Kyle Beach's negligence lawsuit against the organization, per TSN's Rick Westhead.

Beach said that former Blackhawks video coach Brad Aldrich sexually assaulted him in 2010 and that he reported the allegations to the team.

A report from the law firm Jenner & Block revealed the team did not take any action for three weeks. The Blackhawks also did not go to the police with those claims.

Furthermore, the law firm said that the team's initial inaction led to Chicago violating its own sexual harassment policy, "which required investigation of all reports of sexual harassment to be conducted 'promptly and thoroughly.'"

The report reads:

"The failure to promptly and thoroughly investigate the matter and the decision to take no action from May 23 to June 14 had consequences. During that period, Aldrich continued to work with and travel with the team. Aldrich engaged in an unwanted sexual advance on a Blackhawks intern—physically grabbing the intern in a sexual manner. And Aldrich continued to participate in team activities and celebrations, in the presence of John Doe."

Per Westhead, the team claims that the statute of limitations expired before Beach filed the case in court.

"Mr. Beach argues that his failure to timely file this lawsuit is excused because he repressed memories of the assault, but this claim cannot toll the statute of limitations," the Blackhawks' motion read in part.

Chicago's Nov. 30 motion also reveals the team and Beach's attorney have a mediation session scheduled for Dec. 15. Per Westhead, it is "unlikely" a judge will render a decision on Chicago's motion before the Dec. 15 meeting.

Mark Lazerus of The Athletic provided more insight:

"There is still lawyering going on with the Kyle Beach lawsuit. The Blackhawks filed another motion to dismiss the lawsuit two days ago, hitting a deadline they faced. Until the lawsuits are (hopefully) settled, these filings will continue. It's an ongoing legal process."
"It looks unseemly, I get it. A lot of lawyering is. It'd be great if it would just end. But the Dec. 15 (non-binding) settlement mediation is still scheduled. Both sides appear to be entering it in good faith, despite the legal wrangling that continues seven months into the process."

The 31-year-old Beach has played professional hockey since 2009. He currently plays for Black Dragons Erfurt in Germany's Oberliga.