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St. Albert hockey coach faces sexual assault charge in Stony Plain

Association suspends coach in light of charges

By: By Ryan Tumilty

  |  Posted: Saturday, Oct 15, 2011 06:00 am

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The St. Albert Minor Hockey Association has suspended one of its coaches after he was charged with sexual assault, sexual exploitation and forcible confinement.

The RCMP in Stony Plain, where he resides, charged Robert John Paolinelli, 41, with the three charges last week. He will make his first court appearance in Stony Plain on Nov. 2.

Const. Barbara Roy said a young person came forward with a complaint about Paolinelli earlier this month.

“We received a complaint on Oct. 3 from a young person, our victim, and after the police investigation Robert Paolinelli was charged on Oct. 8.

Paolinelli is a teacher at St. Thomas Aquinas School in Spruce Grove and has been removed from the classroom, but Roy said the allegations do not relate to anything that took place in a school.

Roy declined to reveal the age or gender of the victim.

Dave Bell, president of the St. Albert Minor Hockey Association, said Paolinelli won’t be working as a coach with the association any more.

“He was suspended last Saturday on the recommendation of the RCMP.”

Bell said Paolinelli was entering his second full year as a coach with the association, but the charges don’t involve his activity with the organization

“None of the charges have anything to do with St. Albert or St. Albert Minor Hockey.”

According to Roy, Paolinelli’s bail conditions prohibit him from contact with anyone unrelated to him under the age of 18 unless someone over the age of 25 is also present. He also cannot attend any place where children might be expected to be and he is not to be involved in coaching or mentoring in organized sports.

Roy said the police are open to the possibility there may be other young people with information to share and they should come forward.

“If there is anyone else who has had contact with Mr. Paolinelli that they want to talk to the police about, then we are definitely open to taking those calls.”


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