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Deep Blue Sea: Kane assault case moves to lift stay

Plus, Joel Quenneville out as Panthers head coach, Kevin Cheveldayoff meeting with Gary Bettman and more on today’s news and notes.

Evander Kane #9 of the San Jose Sharks looks on against the Colorado Avalanche at Ball Arena on May 1, 2021 in Denver, Colorado. Photo by Michael Martin/NHLI via Getty Images

If you thought things couldn’t get worse for Evander Kane, you were most definitely wrong.

The San Jose Sharks forward may be facing more trouble, as the victim in his 2015 sexual assault investigation is now asking the bankruptcy court to allow her case to proceed, per Daniel Kaplan of The Athletic.

Rachel Kuechle has asked the federal bankruptcy court to partially lift the stay on her lawsuit filed five years ago, which could lead to more messy legal issues with Kane.

In January, Kane filed for Chapter 7 bankruptcy, which has since led to four different lawsuits in the process, including both Kuechle’s case and Hope Parker’s 2018 suit which claims that Kane financially coerced her into terminating multiple pregnancies, but never made good on the financial promise. Parker’s case is currently in discovery with the California state court. Kuechle is hoping for them to allow her case to re-commence in New York state court, where it has been stayed since Kane filed for bankruptcy.

In the lawsuit, which was filed in 2016, Kuechle accused Kane of physical assault, though her recent relief-from-stay motion in bankruptcy describes it as a sexual assault.

The motion states that Kane sexually assaulted Kuechle in Buffalo, New York, after midnight on Dec. 27, 2015. The details describe that Kane and Kuechle met on the evening of Dec. 26 at a restaurant, where Kane then provided her alcohol and invited her to the Buffalo Marriott Harbor Center, under the false impression that she would be attending a party in his hotel room.

When the pair got to the hotel room, Kuechle states that Kane inflicted battery on her, causing her to suffer bodily injuries including lacerations, extensive bleeding that required multiple surgeries and blood transfusions, and caused “serious emotional trauma,” per the complaint.

Kuechle is arguing that since Kane is covered by insurance in this case, it would have no impact on his assets in the bankruptcy, but Kane can still oppose the motion, as he may not want to go to trial.

If the bankruptcy judge approves of the case, the trial could be ready within three-to-six months, which would be during the NHL season.

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