Trial begins for former NHL star accused of disgusting behavior
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Trial begins for former NHL star accused of disgusting behavior

Just a sad story with quotes from the alleged victim.



Attorneys gave their opening statements this morning in Franklin Couty (Dallas, Texas) court today in the case of former NHL star Mike Ribeiro who is accused with two counts of sexual assault from a June, 2021 incident.

The 43 year old Ribeiro denies the allegations and asserts that the medical professionals who performed sexual assault tests on the victims did not follow proper protocol.

From Dallas' KLTV:

The state said the victims and Ribeiro first met at a local restaurant on June 21. Ribeiro owned a lake house that the defense said he purchased while playing for the Stars, which he has since sold. The defense said he was in the area in 2021 preparing to sell it.

The defense said two of the alleged victims expressed her interest in buying a lake house, and Ribeiro invited them to his house the next day. The two accepted the invitation.

While on the water, two of the alleged victims were on a boat alone with Ribeiro, said the state. While victim number one was driving the boat with Ribeiro behind her, the state alleges the defendant sexually assaulted her. The state said the alleged victim swatted Ribeiro’s hand away, and he did not have consent for the act.

The second alleged assault, according to prosecutors, happened when victim number two was on a jet ski with the defendant. He allegedly touched her inappropriately without her consent.

The final alleged attempt happened when Ribeiro was on a jet ski with another woman. He attempted to touch her inappropriately, the state said, and the woman elbowed the defendant, telling him not to touch her.

The defense said that the women in the case did not make the situation known to others. The first two alleged victims were on the boat together when one assault happened, and the defense said the first victim did not cry help to the other.

“She doesn’t pull anyone to the side, she doesn’t text anyone,” said the defense.

The defense said they will bring up law enforcement’s investigation of the crime, alleging they did not visit the crime scene until 2023. They also say the nurse who performed the sexual assault test on victims did not follow protocol

A friend of one of the alleged victims took the stand and that's when things really took a turn.

More from KLTV court reporter JD Conte:

A friend of one of the alleged victims took the stand this morning. She was with her when they first encountered Ribeiro at a restaurant on June 21, 2021.

She said they first saw him as they were leaving the restaurant, and he made a comment she could not recall. She did remember saying “He’s an arrogant (expletive),” though she did not remember what exactly he said.

Their next encounter with the defendant came at another restaurant the next day. According to the witness, Ribeiro approached her because her truck was parked close to his car. There was no conflict and she testified that he seemed like “a normal person.”

She said they exchanged numbers with Ribeiro, as he continually attempted to get them to come over his house after they left the restaurant. The alleged victim had expressed interest in seeing Ribeiro’s house the next day, as he was preparing to possibly sell it and she was looking for a lake property to buy.

Texts show Ribeiro saying “One drink! One drink!”

She then began to describe the next day on the Lake.

The state asked her about the defendants attitude towards her friend, who is one of the alleged victims.

“He was flirtatious,” she said, adding he made a comment about kissing her. She said her friend’s attitude seemed indifferent while he was flirting.

The court went to a break for lunch, and the state will continue with the witness when they return.

When the court returned, a witness described the moment her daughter, who is the alleged victim in the attempted sexual assault charge, came up and told her something was wrong.

She said she was crying, and her daughter said they needed to leave.

The defense took over by showing the witness the state’s pictures of Ribeiro’s house. The witness pointed out several differences in the pictures, mainly a different walkway. The defense alleged in their opening statement that law enforcement did not visit the site until 2023.

The defense showed texts from a group chat, depicting, the witness on the stand texting victim number one saying “some things just did not seem right and I needed answers,” in regards to the story she told on the day of the incident.

On re-direct, the witness said that the story of alleged victim number one has not changed.

The next witness was one of the alleged victims. She said that when she was on a jet ski with the defendant, he touched her inappropriately. She elbowed him away, she said, and he responded with: “Sorry, I’m just (expletive) up.”

Soon after he allegedly touched her again without her consent. She told him not to touch her, and began to make her way to shore, where she told her mother what had happened.

It's not known how long the trial is expected to take. The 43 year old Ribeiro is facing up to 20 years in prison for sexual assault and an additional 10 years in prison for attempted sexual assault. 

Source: KLTV