Utah swim coach suspended following sexual abuse allegations

first_imgSALT LAKE CITY — University of Utah head swimming coach Greg Winslow has been suspended from his job pending an investigation into allegations of sexual abuse of a 15-year-old girl while at his previous job in Arizona six years ago.Winslow is alleged to have sexually abused the minor when he was the coach at Sun Devil Aquatics, a club team at Arizona State University, in 2007, according to a statement from Arizona State University following a lengthy investigation by the Arizona State University Police Department.News of the allegations first surfaced Wednesday night when a blogger posted that a police report had been filed about the alleged incident in Arizona and the story was reported by Swimming World Magazine. The allegations claim the abuse happened in a locked coach’s office. It is alleged to have continued over a two-year period.The Utah swimming and diving team is currently competing at the Pac-12 Swimming and Diving Championships in Federal Way, Wash., which run through next Wednesday.In regards to the accusations leveled against Winslow, director of athletics Chris Hill made the following statement Thursday.“The Athletics Department first learned of the allegations against our swim coach Greg Winslow last night,” Hill said. “While it is my understanding from an article published this morning that charges have not been filed against Coach Winslow, I feel the allegations are serious enough to suspend him immediately pending further investigation.”Hill has appointed Richard Marschner, who is in his third year as the diving coach, as the interim swimming and diving coach. He will oversee both the men’s and women’s teams.In a press conference Thursday afternoon, Hill said University of Utah officials learned Thursday morning that Arizona State University’s police department had contacted the University of Utah’s Department of Public Safety on Dec. 5, 2012, regarding Winslow.”The police chief was asked by the investigators when they called to keep it confidential, and he did,” said Keith Sterling, communications director for the University of Utah. “So no one was made aware of these allegations until last night when the news broke.”Concussion Inc. first reported the allegations involving the unidentified teenage swimmers at the Arizona club. In a statement to the website, Winslow said: “These are extremely serious allegations, and if I am accused, I will certainly respond.”Hill said a number of factors went into deciding to place Winslow on leave before charges are filed, but first and foremost was the serious nature of the allegations. He said they will continue to seek more information, but so far have relied on news reports. “We have not heard anything yet, from anybody today, nothing official,” said Hill. “In many ways we’re reacting as you are today, something we’ve just heard.”Winslow has also been under investigation by the University of Utah’s Office of Equal Opportunity for incidents involving African-American swimmer Karson Applin. The OEO talked to more than 50 swimmers in an investigation spanning nearly three months.According to Hill, the OEO advised him in late January that no disciplinary action was recommended.Because of that, the administration took no action against Winslow.During Winslow’s six years as the U. coach, well over a dozen swimmers either quit or were dismissed from the team. Also two of his assistant coaches resigned last year and have taken other collegiate swimming jobs.Hill said the only other issue Winslow has had is some struggles with alcohol, which he’s been very open about, Hill said.Winslow does oversee a swim camp during the summer at the University of Utah. Those who work at the camp undergo background checks, said Hill.As for how the team is handling the situation at such a critical point in the season, Hill isn’t sure.”I haven’t talked to anyone on the swim team,” he said.The Associated Press contributed to this report. Investigators release findings on Ute swim team probe Relatedlast_img read more

Irish woman fights to free husband

first_img Facebook Twitter: @NeosKosmos Instagram Irishwoman Julie Marku hopes that testimony from a DNA specialist, will convince an appeal court in Crete on December 4 that the forensics report used to sentence her husband Mark Marku for armed robbery is unreliable and misleading. Julie Markou has been campaigning for two years to have her husband released from a Cretan prison where he was jailed following a conviction for armed robbery. Mark Marku was convicted to 18 years in prison in January 2012. However his wife Julie Marku, and her parents, Bill and Phyl O’Reilly, believe his trial was a miscarriage of justice, not least because Mark – who is an Albanian citizen – was in Ireland when three of the seven armed robberies he was convicted for took place. Even though he was able to provide alibis, flight records and affidavits that could prove this, these were disregarded by the prosecution as forgeries and dismissed by the judge, they claim. According to the Greek daily Eleftherotypia the prosecution failed to provide any evidence for 11 of the 16 charges brought against him. Mr Marku’s Athens-based lawyer, Leonidas Pegiadis, who spoke to the newspaper stated that his was “a trial of purpose, to restore faith in the police and the courts”. The Irish Innocence Project has come to the side of Julie Marku, in assisting the Greek lawyer of her husband, and is sending to Greece Dr Greg Hampikian, a DNA expert from the Idaho Innocence Project, who will testify at the trial on how his conviction was based on unreliable and misleading evidence that does not prove Mark Marku was involved in the armed robberies. The Innocence Network was founded in 1992 and uses DNA evidence to examine cases where there are claims of wrongful conviction. Since it began, over 300 people have been exonerated only in the USA. Julie and Mark Marku met in Crete in 2007 when Julie was travelling around Greece for the summer. They fell in love and lived and worked in Greece for two years, then they were married in Ireland in April 2009.Source: enetenglishlast_img read more