Wild General Manager Bill Guerin was mentioned in a lawsuit filed against the Pittsburgh Penguins by a former minor league coach who says he was dismissed because he was a whistleblower.
Jarrod Skalde is a former assistant coach with the Penguins' American Hockey League affiliate in Wilkes-Barre/Scranton, Pa. He claimed in a lawsuit filed Nov. 3 that then-WBS coach Clark Donatelli assaulted Skalde's wife in November 2018.
Skalde says in the suit he told Guerin, who was Penguins assistant GM at the time, about the assault seven months later, in June 2019, and Guerin told him it would be taken care of. A week later, Donatelli resigned because of "personal reasons," although Guerin told Skalde that Donatelli had been fired and advised him to "stay quiet," the suit alleges.
Skalde remained an assistant at Wilkes-Barre in 2019-20, but was dismissed in May; the team said his firing was because of pandemic-related economic issues.
Guerin, who oversaw the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton team, became the Wild GM in August, 2019, and was not working for the Penguins when Skalde was fired.
"When I learned of these allegations, I promptly brought them to Pittsburgh Penguins senior management," Guerin said in a statement. "The allegations were quickly investigated. I emphatically deny anything to the contrary."
The Skaldes allege Donatelli sexually assaulted Erin Skalde in a car after the three had dinner following a road game in Providence on Nov. 11, 2018. Jarrod Skalde was unaware of the assault until his wife told him later, and he continued to work for Donatelli until confronting him about the incident in May.
The lawsuit is against the Penguins, the Lemieux Group that owns and operates the Penguins, and Donatelli. A lawyer for the Penguins told TSN that the team has filed a motion to dismiss the lawsuit because the incident was not reported within 180 days as required by Pennsylvania whistleblower laws. The team released a statement saying it "investigated and addressed the alleged incident within hours of being notified."
The Skaldes requested damages in excess of $75,000 for physical and emotional pain, mental suffering and income loss.
The Wild released this statement: "The Minnesota Wild has discussed this matter with Bill Guerin and fully supports him. As this is a matter of active litigation, we will have no further comment."