Bridget Namiotka Says John Coughlin Sexually Abused Her for Years Before Suicide

Mike Chiari@mikechiariFeatured ColumnistMay 21, 2019

Bridget Namiotka and John Coughlin from the United States perform during ISU Junior Grand Prix of Figure Skating Final 2006/07  in the Bulgarian, capital Sofia, Friday, Dec. 8, 2006. (AP Photo)
STR/Associated Press

Bridget Namiotka wrote Sunday on Facebook that John Coughlin sexually abused her for two years while they were pairs figure skating partners.

According to Christine Brennan of USA Today, Namiotka wrote, "I'm sorry but john hurt at least 10 people including me. He sexually abused me for 2 years. Nobody innocent hangs themself."

Coughlin died by suicide at the age of 33 in January after he received an interim suspension from the U.S. Center for SafeSport amid three sexual misconduct allegations.

Namiotka wrote the following regarding Coughlin in three additional posts as well:

"Someone that's innocent doesn't hang himself. Think about the victims when you're speaking up for what he did to at least 10 girls."

"Think about all of the girls he hurt.

"Grooming happens. It happened to me and he hurt a lot of girls. Think about the victims."

Namiotka and Coughlin were figure skating partners from 2004 to 2007. During that time, Namiotka was between the ages of 14 and 17, while Coughlin was between the ages of 18 and 21.

Coughlin's agent, Tara Modlin, wrote the following to Brennan via text when asked to comment on Namiotka's posts: "It seems that you want me to comment on an unstable persons Facebook comment – I don't really understand your question. ... my suggestion is to call some of his other partners."

Prior to his death in January, Coughlin called the allegations "unfounded." Meanwhile, attorney John Manly, who represents Namiotka and two other women who have alleged that Coughlin sexually abused them, had the following to say in March: "My clients and I want to make this clear: John Coughlin used his position of trust and power and prominence in figure skating to sexually abuse multiple minors, three of whom I represent."

Namiotka and Coughlin finished ninth in pairs figures skating at the 2007 United States Figure Skating Championships.

Coughlin later went on to skate alongside Caitlin Yankowskas and then Caydee Denney in pairs figure skating.

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