The U.S. Center for SafeSport banned swimming coach Sean Hutchison on Friday for what its documents called a violation of policies by “digitally penetrating a minor, receiving oral contact from a minor, and engaging in sexual intercourse all with an athlete whom he coached.” That swimmer is Ariana Kukors-Smith, who previously wrote on her blog and said in interviews that Hutchison groomed her as a young teen and then started having sexual contact with her when she was 16 years old—all while he was her coach.
The short investigative report, obtained by Deadspin, reaffirms what Kukors-Smith has said before, stating it as fact. The report says that Hutchison started grooming Kukors-Smith when she was about 15 or 16 years old, and later the communication became sexualized. When Kukors was 16, Hutchison put her hand on his erect penis while they were at a swimming event, the report said. The report found that “Hutchison took a large number of nude pictures of Kukors while she was a minor.”
According to the notice of the director’s decision, Hutchison declined to participate in SafeSport’s process. Hutchison also is under investigation by the Department of Homeland Security for possible crimes related to what Kukors-Smith has said. His lawyer told the Orange County Register that Hutchison isn’t fleeing the country and is in regular contact with the government.
As outlined in the director’s decision, the ban means that Hutchison is prohibited from participating with anything connected to the U.S. Olympic Committee, any of the national governing bodies recognized by the USOC, and any local affiliated organization connected to one of those NGBs.
If Hutchison does appeal the decision, the ban could be lifted, as has happened in one case with USA Taekwondo.