Swim coach Sean Hutchison has categorically denied the allegations that he groomed and sexually abused Olympian Ariana Kukors. Hutchison released a statement to the Associated Press through his attorney today.
Kukors came forward this week claiming that Hutchison began grooming her when she was 13 and began sexually abusing her as a teen. We contacted Hutchison for comment at the time, but didn’t receive a response. Hutchison’s attorney, Brad Meryhew, released a statement from Hutchison to the Associated Press today in which Hutchison denies ever abusing Kukors or doing anything that wasn’t consensual. He says the two were in a “committed relationship” after the 2012 Olympics and that the two lived together in Seattle.
USA Swimming has confirmed it investigated an allegedly inappropriate relationship between the two in 2010, but says Hutchison, Kukors’ and Kukors’ sister denied that a relationship existed. Kukors now says she lied at the time out of fear while still in the allegedly abusive relationship.
Hutchison’s full statement is below:
“At no time did I ever abuse Ariana Kukors or do anything with her that was not consensual. I absolutely deny having any sexual or romantic relationship with her before she was old enough to legally make those decisions for herself. Prior to that time, I did nothing to ‘groom’ her.
“After the 2012 Olympics we were in a committed relationship and Ariana lived at my residence in Seattle for more than a year. Her younger sister also lived with us for several months and her mother was a regular visitor to our home. I deeply regret that she would make these wild allegations all these years later.”