The Manitoba Junior Hockey is re-opening its investigation into the Neepawa Natives’ hazing complaint. It was also announced today that Neepawa Assistant Coach Brad Biggers, who recently resigned from his position, will be suspended indefinitely.
“As a result of several Neepawa Natives players recanting their earlier testimony, the Neepawa Natives hockey club presented new information to the MJHL on Thursday,” MJHL Commissioner Kim Davis said.
“With the new information, the MJHL will immediately re-open the investigation into the hazing complaint. The league will also be appointing a special, independent investigator to further investigate the matter.”
The indefinite suspension of Biggers will prevent him from joining another organization until the second investigation is fully completed, explained Davis.
Davis said the independent investigator will be appointed as quickly as possible. Further sanctions and suspensions against the Neepawa Natives hockey club are pending following the findings of the special investigator, explained Davis.
Earlier this week the MJHL announced a $5,000 fine and multiple player suspensions to the Natives. This was the result of an investigation launched by the MJHL after a complaint of hazing was filed against the Natives.
“A hazing incident occurred during the week of September 26,” said Davis. “The message from the MJHL is clear. This type of activity is unacceptable and will not be tolerated.
“There is no excuse for this type of inappropriate behavior. Ultimately, the hockey club is responsible for the conduct of its staff and players. As a result, a significant financial sanction has been imposed to reflect the importance of the team’s responsibility in this matter.”
(Nathan can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org)