November 27, 2011
Syracuse University has fired Bernie Fine as an assistant men's basketball coach, a school spokesman announced Sunday night, hours after new reports arose regarding his alleged sexual abuse of boys."At the direction of Chancellor Cantor, Bernie Fine's employment with Syracuse University has been terminated, effective immediately," Kevin Quinn said in a statement, referring to Syracuse Chancellor Nancy Cantor.
Fine was placed on administrative leave earlier this month, after former Syracuse ball boy Bobby Davis and his stepbrother, Mike Lang, accused him of molesting them.
Police opened an investigation on the matter on November 17, Syracuse police Sgt. Tom Connellan said.
The Syracuse-based Post-Standard newspaper and ESPN both reported Sunday the existence of a recording of a 2002 phone conversation that they said Davis had recorded between him and the coach's wife.
Davis provided the recording to the Post-Standard soon after it was recorded, but the newspaper then declined to report on it because it couldn't find "witnesses, enough corroborating evidence or a second accuser."
The wife, Laurie Fine, at the time suggested to the Post-Standard that Davis had taped her on multiple occasions and edited the recordings to make them appear more inflammatory.
In the tape, a woman -- which ESPN, citing experts, claims was Laurie Fine -- said she knew "everything that went on" with her husband, adding that "he thinks he's above the law."
"Bernie has issues ... and you trusted somebody you shouldn't," the woman said, speaking to Davis.
The woman appears to acknowledge an inappropriate sexual relationship between Davis and Bernie Fine, saying, "It's just wrong and you were a kid." She also said that her husband should "find (himself) a gay boy, get your rocks off."
Repeated calls by CNN to Laurie Fine were unanswered Sunday, and no one answered repeated knocks on the door of her house.
Bernie Fine's attorneys, Donald Martin and Karl Sleight, released a statement Sunday declining to comment on the reports.
"Any comment from (Fine) would only invite and perpetuate ancient and suspect claims," the lawyers said. "Mr. Fine remains hopeful of a credible and expeditious review of the relevant issues by law enforcement authorities."