Bill Conlin's long career as a sports columnist for the Philadelphia Daily News came to a sudden end last December when three women and a man told the Philadelphia Inquirer he had molested them as children. Authorities determined the allegations against him were credible, but that the incidents were beyond the statute of limitations. Conlin initially made it sound as if he planned to fight back against his accusers. But since then: nothing. Now his lawyer, George Bochetto, has told the New York Daily News that Conlin hasn't done anything because he was neither charged with a crime nor hit with a civil suit.
Conlin has a home in the Dominican Republic, but Bochetto would not say where he lives these days. "He is going about his life, enjoying his retirement," Bochetto said.
Bochetto said the allegations against his client are "not true," but he would not say why he believes the alleged victims made the accusations.
But if the abuse claims are not true, why not fight back? Why wouldn't Conlin take aggressive steps to clear his name and prove he is innocent of a horrible crime? Why not file a defamation suit against the people who claim they were molested by Conlin?
"A defamation suit," Bochetto said, "only propagates the allegations."
Conlin also has a home in Largo, Fla., just a few miles from the Phillies' spring training complex in Clearwater. There were no reported sightings of him during spring training, and a source told me he had been blackballed from dining at one of his favorite restaurants across the bay in Indian Rocks Beach. It appears the 78-year-old widower will be living out his days in seclusion.