After a nearly a year-long probe into a claim that Syracuse University assistant basketball coach Bernie Fine had molested a boy in 2002 in a Pittsburgh hotel room, federal authorities have dropped the investigation.
The authorities say there is no evidence to support the claim that Bernie Fine had molested a boy in 2002.
”The nature and seriousness of these allegations, which involved conduct typically committed in private with individuals who are reluctant to come forward, warranted a thorough federal investigation,” US Attorney Richard Hartunian said Friday.
Bernie Fine lost his job and there is no indication yet as to whether or not Fine will be able to get his job back. Naturally, given the nature of the allegations, the university had to let him go. Now that the investigation is over it is unclear if he will be able to return.
The allegations surfaced following the spotlight on Penn State University and the scandal involving Jerry Sandusky.
Two former Syracuse ballboys, Bobby Davis and Michael Lang came forward on November 17th and accused the longtime assistant of inappropriate touching and fondling when they were teenagers. Davis claims the sexual contact took place over several years.
The claims by Davis and Lang occurred too long ago for Fine to be prosecuted. Just 10 days later, however, a third man, 23-year-old Zachary Tomaselli pubilcally accused Fine of molesting him in 2002 in a hotel room. That same day, ESPN aired an audiotape in which Fine’s wife. Listen to the recording of Fine’s wife for yourself:
This video reveals more detail from the conversation between Davis and Laurie Fine:
Jim Boeheim supported Fine when the accusations broke and insisted Davis was lying. ‘The Penn State thing came out, and the kid behind this is trying to get money,” he told the Syracuse Post-Standard.
Bernie Fine‘s wife, Laurie has since sued ESPN, alleging defamation and claiming they ruined her life by portraying her as a “monster” and forcing her to have to sell her home. Her suit is still pending.