A sixth female has arrive forward to allege that Olympic taekwondo winner Steven Lopez sexually assaulted her, probably after she was drugged, according to an short article printed Saturday by The Each day Beast.
Audrey-Ann LeBlanc, a Canadian taekwondo athlete, told The Day by day Beast that Lopez raped her as another gentleman attempted to set his penis in her mouth while in a Dallas lodge in Might 2010.
LeBlanc stated the alleged incident commenced after she drank a “blueberry-Gatorade-vodka concoction” that Lopez had handed her. She quickly became incapacitated. He then led her to a place wherever she met two of his mates.
“He said one thing like, ‘It’s ok,’ and began to kiss me and pushed me back on to the bed,” she explained to The Everyday Beast.
LeBlanc is the seventh girl to publicly allege that Steven Lopez, a a few-time Olympic medalist, or Jean Lopez, his brother and coach, had sexually assaulted her.
The Lopez brothers have denied the allegations from them in the past. In 2017, when United states Today Sports to start with published the accounts of four girls, Steven Lopez, now 41, explained, “I’ve never — very little, absolutely nothing at all. Practically nothing like that. Practically nothing near to that.”
In a different 2017 interview, Jean Lopez mentioned, “I’ve by no means been inappropriate with any person.”
Legal professional Howard Jacobs, who signifies the brothers, denied all allegations of misconduct towards the brothers when reached by United states of america These days Athletics on Monday.
Dan Hill, a spokesman for the U.S. Heart for SafeSport, said he could not comment on particular conditions. But, talking normally, he stated new allegations could bring about the centre to open up a new investigation even versus responding events who have proceeded as a result of arbitration.
The Lopezes have in no way been billed criminally. The Department of Justice is presently investigating Usa Taekwondo and a number of Olympic national governing bodies for their reaction to reports of sexual abuse, and the Every day Beast reported that an legal professional from the Section of Justice interviewed LeBlanc last month.
Jacobs informed United states of america Nowadays Athletics that neither of the Lopez brothers has been contacted by the Division of Justice.
Five girls sued Steven and Jean Lopez, as properly as United states of america Taekwondo and the U.S. Olympic Committee, in April 2018. (The USOC adjusted its name to the United States Olympic and Paralympic Committee in June, immediately after this lawsuit was submitted.) A federal judge in September dismissed the claims versus Jean Lopez, but the lawsuit is proceeding through discovery in the case involving Steven Lopez, United states Taekwondo and the USOPC.
SafeSport banned both Steven and Jean Lopez in 2018 for sexual misconduct involving a insignificant. SafeSport also identified Jean Lopez, 46, responsible of sexual misconduct. Each bans were finally lifted following the ladies who experienced submitted the grievances declined to testify in arbitration proceedings.
The women of all ages who filed complaints versus Jean Lopez are between all those who sued the Lopez brothers, and their lawyers did not want them subjected to a number of cross-exams. As a substitute, they requested SafeSport to depose the gals in connection with the lawsuit, and then use all those depositions in the arbitration hearings for the Lopez brothers.
But SafeSport declined to do that, and a three-human being panel of arbitrators cited the lack of sworn testimony in lifting Jean Lopez’s ban in January 2019. An arbitrator cited similar reasoning in lifting Steven Lopez’s ban in December 2018 after the lady in that case declined to testify in person.
Despite the arbitrators’ decisions, Environment Taekwondo kept its preliminary suspensions of equally brothers in position, telling United states Now Sports in March that “given the nature of the allegations, Environment Taekwondo believes this determination protects and serves the ideal interests of the activity, taekwondo athletes and the two individuals worried.” That final decision properly finished Steven Lopez’s bid to qualify for the Tokyo Olympics.
Environment Taekwondo did not straight away return a message Monday from United states Right now Athletics inquiring about Steven and Jean Lopez’s existing eligibility.