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The Latest: USA Swimming investigated, cleared coach in 2010


Thursday, February 8, 2018

SEATTLE (AP) The Latest on sex abuse allegations against a former Olympic swim coach (all times local):

1:25 p.m.

The U.S. governing body for swimming says it only recently learned of sexual abuse allegations against a former Olympic coach by world champion Ariana Kukors.

USA Swimming said in a statement Thursday that Kukors' public statement this week marked the first time it "learned of the allegations that Sean Hutchison sexually abused Ariana when she was a minor."

Hutchison has denied the allegations.

USA Swimming said it hired an independent private investigator in 2010 after learning of rumored relationship between Hutchison and Kukors, then 21. The organization said both denied a romantic or sexual relationship and the investigation was closed with no misconduct found.

USA Swimming said it sent that case file to the U.S. Center for SafeSport when notified in January of a case against Hutchison.

It says it stands by Kukors.

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12:55 p.m.

A former Olympic swimming coach has denied what he called "wild" sexual misconduct allegations against him by world champion Ariana Kukors.

Sean Hutchison said in a statement Thursday through his attorney that at no time did he ever abuse Kukors or do anything with her that was not consensual.

Kukors accused him of sexually abusing her starting when she was 16. Court documents say she told authorities that he also took thousands of sexually explicit photographs of her when she was a minor and groomed her for abuse when she was 13.

Hutchison denied "having any sexual or romantic relationship with her before she was old enough to legally make those decisions for herself" and did nothing to groom her.

The allegations come as U.S. authorities and police searched Hutchison's Seattle apartment this week.

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9:10 p.m.

Investigators have searched the Seattle home of a former U.S. Olympic Team swimming coach amid allegations that he sexually abused and took explicit photos of an underage athlete.

The SeattlePI reports investigators with a Homeland Security taskforce searched Sean Hutchison's Seattle apartment Tuesday, recovering electronic devices they say may contain evidence.

Ariana Kukors, a member of the 2012 Olympic team, said in a statement to the media outlet Wednesday that she went to police recently with claims that Hutchison used his position as her longtime coach to "groom her" for abuse.

Hutchison left a Southern California program where he trained young women on the U.S. team in 2010 after speculation that he was sexually involved with a swimmer. He denied it.

Hutchison didn't immediately respond to an email for comment Wednesday.