No charges filed in AAU abuse investigation

Two former players accused ex-Amateur Athletic Union CEO Robert Dodd of abuse, but neither would file a police report.

Story highlights

  • Robert Dodd had been accused of sexual abuse in the 1980s
  • Ralph West, one of two who made the allegations, has opted not to file a report, police say
  • Police Sgt. Karen Rudolph: "If someone does file a complaint, we will investigate it"

No criminal charges are being filed after an investigation into sexual abuse allegations made against former Amateur Athletic Union executive Robert "Bobby" Dodd, police in Memphis, Tennessee, said Tuesday.

Ralph West -- a man who publicly accused Dodd of repeated sexual abuse in the 1980s when he was a teenager and Dodd was a Memphis-based YMCA coach -- has told investigators he does not plan to file a criminal offense report against Dodd, said police Sgt. Karen Rudolph.

No one else has stepped forward to file a complaint since the allegations broke, and as a result, Rudolph said, police will "not move forward" with the case.

"If someone does file a complaint, we will investigate it," she said.

"It is unknown" why West decided not to file a report against Dodd, Rudolph said.

West and another former sports player who chose to remain anonymous were featured on ESPN's "Outside the Lines" program in December, detailing some of the abuse allegations.

AAU officials said that in November, before the ESPN report aired, they had received anonymous phone calls and e-mail messages accusing Dodd of inappropriate behavior. The AAU hired a private investigator and launched its own internal investigation to scrutinize the anonymous tips.

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Dodd, 63, the AAU's longtime president and CEO, was dismissed on November 14, a week after allegations first began arriving.

After a monthlong probe, the AAU went to police, the organization's interim president told CNN.

"We formed our own internal investigative process, and then once we found out who the accusers were, we immediately went to the police department," said Louis Stout. "We didn't sit on this. No one has acted improperly within the Amateur Athletic Union regarding these accusations."

Steve Farese, Dodd's lawyer, told CNN Tuesday that he is not surprised that no charges are being filed.

"The world has changed and it's not for the better," he said, "because now, unsubstantiated claims can be spread through the media and the Internet and destroy a 30-year body of good work. It's unfortunate ESPN decided to use a man's life to sell ads."

West and the player who remained anonymous had told ESPN the sexual abuse firestorm surrounding Penn State coach Jerry Sandusky prompted them to come forward.

The YMCA said Dodd left in 1992 "to pursue AAU sports full-time," including founding an organization called the YOMCA, which stands for Youth of Memphis Competitive Association and is unrelated to the YMCA.

Dodd is now recovering from colon cancer surgery at his home in Florida, Farese said.