Australian Olympic athlete Brendan Kerry speaks out after receiving a lifetime ban following allegations of a sexual offense with a minor

Brendan Kerry, a three-time Winter Olympian figure skater and former Australian flagbearer, is facing serious accusations of sexual misconduct involving a minor. The US Center for SafeSport has issued a lifetime ban against him, citing the allegations. Kerry, however, maintains his innocence and plans to appeal the decision.

In a statement, Kerry expressed shock at the sudden ban, stating that he had not received any prior warning or communication from the SafeSport organization regarding the allegations. He firmly denies the accusations and intends to challenge the suspension through arbitration.

The allegations against Kerry date back to the 2016-17 season when he was a registered coach with US Figure Skating. SafeSport conducted an investigation into the claims, including an accusation that he forced a second skater into non-consensual sex at a party in 2016. Gracie Gold, a US figure skater, has since come forward as the second skater involved in the incident.

While Kerry’s ban only applies in the US where SafeSport has jurisdiction, he has voluntarily stepped down from coaching at Sydney’s Macquarie Ice Rink in coordination with Australian figure skating authorities. The Australian Professional Skaters’ Association has pledged to conduct its own investigation into the matter.

The Australian Olympic Committee and Ice Skating Australia were reportedly unaware of the SafeSport investigation until the ban was announced. Kerry, known for winning multiple Australian figure skating titles and competing in the Winter Olympics, retired after the Beijing Games in 2022. He has achieved various milestones in his career, including a 17th place finish at his final Olympic appearance.

The situation surrounding Brendan Kerry highlights the importance of addressing allegations of misconduct in sports and ensuring a safe environment for all athletes. As the legal process unfolds, the skating community and fans await the outcome of Kerry’s appeal and the results of further investigations into the allegations.

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