Hockey task force releases findings: The highlights

By Tim Healey/DFP Staff

The hockey task force called for by Boston University President Robert Brown in the spring released its report on Wednesday, which included a series of recommendations that BU and BU Athletics have already started to implement. For those of you that don’t want to sift through the entire report and Brown’s letter to the BU community, here are some highlights:

Background:
–Brown put the task force together in March following the December arrest of Corey Trivino and the February arrest of Max Nicastro, both for sexual assault charges.
–Given the arrests, the BU president wanted to look into the “culture and climate” of the team.
–The task force, led by BU Trustee Dr. Jonathan R. Cole and BU Provost Jean Morrison, was made up of 16 people, all of whom were either BU staff, faculty or trustees.
–The task force had six meetings as a whole and had further meetings within its three sub-comittees: one on performance and student life, one on team culture and climate, and one on sexual assault and sexual harassment.

Findings:
–There is a “culture of sexual entitlement” among some players on the team
–“Assessment of team members’ recent disciplinary history did not reveal a pattern of infractions that was significantly different, in type or number, from the undergraduate population as a whole.”
–Members of the team often become isolated very quickly from the rest of the students “by virtue of their housing arrangements, having their own functionally exclusive training and competition venue, and the demands of team participation.”
–The team’s academic performance “falls below that of the undergraduate student body as a whole.”
–The fact that some BU players have been drafted by NHL teams contributes “to a culture and climate in which players may not be fully engaged in the academic, intellectual and extra-curricular activities” the way other students are.
–No NCAA infractions were found.

Recommendations:
–Required “sexual assault prevention training on an annual basis” for the team.
–“A review of the processes and standards used by admissions for recruits” to make sure student-athletes “are academically prepared to be successful students.”
–Men’s hockey head coach Jack Parker should step down as the executive director of athletics.
–BU should not give student-athletes the option of enrolling in the Metropolitan College.
–BU should work with “local businesses, campus area bars, and restaurants” to “help ensure the safety of all students.”
–The team should review and re-write team rules. Said rules should include “clearly articulated expectations for players’ behavior both on and off the ice, as well as the disciplinary actions” that could result if players went against team policy.

Reaction:
Both Parker and Athletic Director Mike Lynch sent out statements following the task force findings release.

Parker said: “I think their summary of findings is accurate. More importantly, I feel their recommendations for action will help our team, other student-athletes and the student body in general to ensure a better all-around experience.

“I fully agree with the NCAA and task force’s recommendation to split up my two jobs. When asked to choose one or the other, it was easy for me to choose my position as our head hockey coach. My staff and I endorse the findings and it is our job to implement and monitor the recommendations that are specific to the hockey team.”

Lynch said the school has his department’s full support as it begins to put the recommendations into action — a process that has already begun.

“Throughout this process, we have ensured that the University administration and our athletic department continue to share the same goals in regards to our men’s ice hockey program and its future as part of BU’s campus life,” Lynch said. “This has been a challenging year, but we are ready to move forward as an even stronger athletic program.”

The Daily Free Press will have more on the task force on Thursday.

From the Freep: Trivino pleads guilty to assault and battery, trespassing

By: Emily Overholt

Former Boston University hockey forward Corey Trivino pleaded guilty to two counts of assault and battery and one count of trespassing Tuesday morning at Brighton District Court.

He was sentenced to two years of probation under the condition he remains alcohol free, attends weekly Alcoholics Anonymous meetings, submits to random urine tests, has no contact with the victim and undergoes a psychiatric evaluation.

These charges come from Trivino’s Dec. 11 arrest. Originally he was charged with assault with intent to rape, three counts of indecent assault battery and two counts of breaking and entering.

The two counts of assault and battery he was charged with were reduced from indecent assault and battery and the trespassing charge was reduced from breaking and entering.

Assistant District Attorney Gloriann Moroney of Conley’s Family Protection and Sexual Assault Bureau said the plea bargain was recommended because the victim did not want to go through the trauma of trial.

Read more at dailyfreepress.com

From the Freep: Prosecution drops major charge in Trivino case

By Emily Overholt/DFP Staff

Former Boston University men’s hockey forward Corey Trivino is no longer being charged with assault with intent to rape, the most serious of seven charges stemming from a Dec. 11 incident, due to insufficient evidence, officials said.

Brighton District Attorney spokesman Jake Wark said there was no evidence suggesting Trivino intended to use force in efforts to rape the victim.

“We have an ethical obligation not to pursue a charge that we know we can’t prove,” he said. “It’s certainly not a reflection of the victim’s credibility or anything of that nature.”

Read more at dailyfreepress.com.

Alleged Trivino incident an extreme example of previous floor behavior

By Arielle Aronson and Tim Healey/DFP Staff

Throughout the fall semester, members of the No. 9 Boston University men’s hockey team – living in the same building where then senior forward Corey Trivino allegedly sexually harassed a female student on Dec. 11 – had consistently exhibited inappropriate behavior, building residents said.

The 21-year-old Trivino’s arrest on charges of breaking and entering, assault and battery and assault to rape painted a picture of an isolated incident of inappropriate behavior from one of the hockey team’s brightest stars.

After the arrest, however, The Daily Free Press learned that Trivino’s behavior on the night of the arrest was an exaggerated example of commonplace behavior on that floor.

Residents of the building told The DFP while they never experienced a player attempting to assault them, issues with players bothering girls on the floor was a large problem that dated back to the beginning of the semester.

The residents asked to remain anonymous in fear of getting involved in “drama” concerning the still-open legal case – Trivino’s next court date is set for Jan. 18 – but they said some of the players were often disruptive, made lewd comments and knocked on girls’ doors.

Residents said the players would ask for condoms or see if the girls would let the barely dressed players into their rooms. If residents did not open their doors, they said, the players would leave. But the noisy behavior, which commonly occurred on weeknights, was a nuisance.

“They’re always running through the hallways and banging on our door, banging on other peoples’ doors in the hallways,” an anonymous resident said. “The Resident Advisor would have to come out and tell them like, ‘Guys, be quiet.’”

In October, the RA sent an email to everyone on the floor stating her floor was not a zoo and implored them to “stop behaving like animals,” the residents said. The residents originally volunteered to provide a copy of the email to The DFP, but later rescinded their offer.

The email did not stop the players’ behavior. The residents said the RA was constantly leaving her room to yell at the rowdy players and attempting to quiet them down.

When asked to describe which players ran through the halls and disturbed girls on the floor, residents did not describe Trivino. They did not recognize a description of Trivino and said they had personally never seen him behaving inappropriately in the hall.

Residents on other floors of the building did not report the same problems, and said players on their floors never ran loudly through the halls and were always well behaved. Many residents of the building said they were unaware they lived on the same floor as hockey players.

The residents whom lived on the rowdy floor said the only way to avoid the players was to ignore them.

“Basically it’s just an everyday kind of thing,” a resident said. “They’d be screaming in the hallways a lot. We ignore it most of the time.”

“We don’t ever open the door,” another resident said. “It’s no use to encourage that behavior because it’ll just give them more attention.”

However, in the police report describing Trivino’s arrest, the RA that Trivino allegedly came after said she had no choice but to open the door. According to the police report, the victim said she had to open the door because she was an RA.

According to other RAs at BU, however, the rule does not exist.

An RA in another building at BU, who asked to remain anonymous because she was unsure if she was allowed to comment on the matter, said she never heard of a rule requiring her to always open her door if someone knocked.

Another RA, who asked to remain anonymous, said she was shocked when she read – in the original DFP article published on Dec. 13 – the victim said she had to open the door all three times Trivino came calling. The RA interviewed had never heard of a rule requiring her to open her door. The RA said that in training, RAs are taught their safety comes first and if they are threatened, they should do whatever possible to protect themselves.

The DFP made multiple attempts to reach David Zamojski, BU’s director of Residence Life, for comment on the matter. Zamojski’s office, however, said he would call back a different day until, three days after the first attempt to reach Zamojski, his office said he was out for the weekend.

Attempts to reach others in housing were denied, as all others contacted deferred comment to Zamojski. Zamojski also did not respond to an email from The DFP seeking comment.

Former RA Caitlin Cox, a BU Class of 2010 graduate, said she understood why the victim would originally open the door for Trivino even if there were no rule requiring her to do so.

“The bottom line is that as an RA, your job is to help the students you are in charge of,” Cox said. “Not only is it your job, people become RAs because they want to help. So if there was someone banging on the door in the middle of the night, you jump to action because that is what you are trained to do and that is what you are ready to do.”

The DFP also spoke with BU spokesman Colin Riley, who denied commenting on the RA policy and said, BU officials would not comment while the police investigation continues.

In spite of the RA’s efforts to stop the rambunctious behavior, one resident said the hockey players’ habits created an uneasy living environment and left residents wondering how to prevent a similar assault from happening to them.

“We don’t open the door, but I mean if we did I can only imagine. . .what if that [attack] happened to one of us?” one resident said. “They’re big guys, we can’t fight back.”

Kevin Dillon, Meredith Perri and Annie Ropeik contributed to the reporting of this article.

Parker: Trivino’s actions leave ‘no question in my mind it’s an alcohol problem’


By Arielle Aronson and Tim Healey/DFP Staff

Photo is a DFP file photo by Amanda Swinhart/DFP Staff

Corey Trivino – the Boston University Hockey team’s star forward who was dismissed from the team Monday after criminal charges stemming from an arrest Sunday night – has a history of alcohol-related problems, according to BU hockey coach Jack Parker.

In a phone interview with the Daily Free Press on Monday, Parker said this is the fourth alcohol-related incident the 21-year-old Trivino has been punished by the team for in his three-plus years at BU.

These incidents are due to what Parker believes is a serious drinking problem.

“There is no question in my mind it’s an alcohol problem,” Parker said. “I did [ask him to get treatment], but he didn’t think it was for him.”

Parker’s comments come one day after Trivino was arraigned on three counts of indecent assault and battery on a person over 14, one count of assault to rape, and three counts of breaking and entering in the nighttime for felony, according to criminal dockets obtained from Brighton District Court.

Trivino pleaded not guilty to all charges at his arraignment on Monday. He was kicked off the team that same day.

“Corey knew exactly where he stood,” Parker said. “It’s sad but it’s simple for me. Corey knew in September that if he had another alcohol-related incident on campus or off campus, he would be gone from the team.

“I asked him [Monday], ‘What do you think I’m going to do to you, Corey?’ He said, ‘You’re going to kick me off the team.’ I said, ‘Why do you think that?’ He said, ‘Because you told me in September that you were going to kick me off the team if I had another alcohol-related incident.’ And I said, ‘That’s correct, and here we are.’”

The incident leading to Trivino’s arrest occurred Sunday night before 11 p.m. Parker said Trivino was watching the Patriots game earlier Sunday afternoon with some teammates. They were together for a while before a few of Trivino’s teammates put him to bed because he was so drunk, Parker said.

According to the narrative in the BU Police Department report, given to the Daily Free Press by Brighton District Court, Trivino first made contact with the victim when she asked individuals who were rowdy in a room to quiet down.

Parker said he believed Trivino was alone at the time of the incident and said he had not heard from residence life about a complaint involving any issue with other team members.

Trivino allegedly forced his way into the room of the victim and forcibly kissed and groped her, according to the BUPD report.

Parker was alerted of the incident around 1 a.m. on Monday morning, at which point he called an attorney to ensure Trivino would be represented in court later that day. He also spoke with Trivino’s parents and then with Trivino himself, at which point Parker told Trivino he was off the team, the coach said.

“I knew as soon as they called me that Corey Trivino was no longer on the BU hockey team,” Parker said. “I told him before in September. I told him then, ‘The good news is, I’m not going to do anything about that incident,’ which is minor compared to this one. ‘But here’s the bad news,’ I said. ‘Next time, I’m going to kick you off the team for good. And here’s the worst news, there will be another incident, Corey.’”

Before Sunday night’s incident, Parker said he had tried a variety of punishments to get Trivino to be more responsible about drinking. He suspended him from the team in May of 2010, forced him to do extra workouts and asked him to consider treatment. None of the punishments worked, and so when Trivino had another alcohol-related incident last spring, Parker decided just to warn him instead of punishing him.

“I could suspend him [at that time] for some games, but that didn’t work,” Parker said. “So I said this is going to be real simple. I’m going to give you a fair warning. One more incident and you’ll be gone. One more alcohol-related incident and you’re out of here. No ifs, ands or buts. That’s what he knew was going to be the outcome.

“The only thing you can do to help a kid with an alcohol problem is get him to stop drinking.”

Trivino was in accordance with team rules Sunday night as far as consuming alcohol is concerned. Players 21 years or older are allowed to drink on Saturday nights or on other designated nights as chosen by the coaching staff.

Parker said Sunday night was one of those specified nights because the team had just returned from a three-day road trip to play the University of New Hampshire and the University of Maine. Trivino registered two goals in the game against Maine, his final game in a BU sweater, marking the first time he had a multi-goal game in his BU career.

Parker spoke with the rest of his team about Trivino on Monday. He said they are “very upset” about losing Trivino, but knew it was the likely result of Trivino’s actions because the team was aware of the ultimatum Trivino faced.

“They’re very upset for the loss of a teammate,” Parker said. “They’re very upset for him having the huge problems he has away from Agganis. His problems with BU hockey are the least of his problems right now. And they’re very upset that there’s another victim involved.

“If he broke his leg, it would be a big hole to fill in the lineup, but it’s just the way it happened. It’s not only a hole to fill in the lineup, it’s a hole to fill in the team’s soul too because he’s a well-liked kid and he’s a good teammate. He’s no longer with us, so it’s like he died, you know? That’s the challenge of it for the leadership of the team and the coaches, to get everybody to turn the page. Corey’s no longer here.”

From the Freep: Dismissal of hockey star Trivino right move, students say

By Emily Overholt/DFP Staff

As the news of Boston University men’s hockey star Corey Trivino’s arrest and removal from the No. 9-ranked team spreads, students said they support the decision in dismissing Trivino from the team.

“Not only as a BU student but as a senior hockey player, and the leading goal scorer, much of the student body praised him,” said Samantha Sharma, a freshman in the College of Arts and Sciences.

Sharma said she considered Trivino’s actions foolish, considering the reputation he held at BU.

Read more at dailyfreepress.com.

BREAKING: Corey Trivino kicked off BU hockey team

By Tim Healey and Arielle Aronson/DFP Staff

UPDATE: 10:51 a.m.
Men’s hockey forward Corey Trivino, 21, pleaded not guilty to charges Monday stemming from an arrest by Boston University police late Sunday night after allegedly groping and attempting to rape a BU resident assistant.

The Metropolitan College senior was held without bail until his arraignment. Trivino, the leading goal scorer (13 goals) in Hockey East, was arraigned on seven different criminal charges at Brighton District Court on Monday.

Trivino has been permanently dismissed from the No. 9 Boston University men’s hockey team.

Trivino is charged with three counts of indecent assault and battery on a person over 14, one count of assault to rape, and three counts of breaking and entering in the nighttime for felony, according to criminal dockets obtained from Brighton District Court.

According to Jake Wark, Suffolk County District Attorney spokesman, Trivino was released without bail, but had to surrender his Canadian passport and was ordered to stay away from the victim and BU housing. If Trivino wishes to use his passport, he must post $25,000 cash bail, Wark said.

According to the BU Police Department police report, obtained from Brighton District Court, the incident began when the RA heard individuals in a room being extremely loud. The RA went to the room to tell them to quiet down, and Trivino followed her back to her room and pushed her door open, the report states. She said in the report that she told Trivino to go back to his room, but instead he allegedly started kissing and groping the victim. The victim told Trivino he was being inappropriate and should leave her room, and he left, according to the police report.

A few minutes later, Trivino allegedly returned and was banging on her door. The RA opened the door slightly and Trivino tried to kiss her, but she pushed him away, according to the police report. The RA said in the police report that she told Trivino “You need to stop,” and “You need to go.” Trivino allegedly cornered the victim by her desk and attempted to kiss her as she pushed him away, the police report said. She said in the police report that she managed to get him to leave at that time and she then texted a friend for help.

Trivino then returned a third time and banged loudly on the door, according to the report. The victim said in the report that she needed to open the door as part of her RA duties. Trivino allegedly forced his way in again and tried to kiss her, then sat on her bed, took his shoes off, said he would sleep there that night and laid down.

At that time, the RA called the Resident Director of the area, the police report said. When Trivino heard her on the phone with the Resident Director, he put his shoes on and ran out of her room, the police report said, and then the Resident Director told the RA to call the BUPD.

According to the police report, “a very intoxicated male” got on the elevator with the police responding to the call. The male identified himself as Trivino and identified his room number as that of the RA, the police report said, at which time he was arrested.

Trivino’s next court date is Jan. 18 at Brighton District Court.

UPDATE: 7:59 a.m.
Vinny Saponari, a former linemate and roommate of Trivino’s and currently a forward with Northeastern University, has not responded to a voicemail seeking comment. However, he had this to say on Twitter around 3 a.m. without directly mentioning Trivino: “Somtimes life takes turns you cant explain so you turn to friends n family n just have a little faith because things tend to work out #myboy.”

Senior forward Corey Trivino has been kicked off the BU hockey team as of Monday night, according to team sources. His removal from the team is reportedly due to an arrest Sunday night for breaking and entering and assault with an attempt to rape. More details to follow.