Evander Kane, a Buffalo Sabres left winger, is the subject of a sex offense investigation by Buffalo police over an incident that allegedly occurred Sunday morning in a downtown hotel room near First Niagara Center, three police sources have told The Buffalo News.
Kane has not been charged with any crime, and law enforcement officials would confirm only that there is an ongoing investigation by officers from the department’s Sex Offense Squad.
“We have an investigation ongoing,” a Buffalo police source said. “We are not naming the suspect, and we do not expect it to be resolved in the very near future.”
Another law enforcement source said the woman was having “memory issues.”
The team reported that Kane, 24, was absent from practice Sunday morning for personal reasons. Kane’s practice jersey was hanging in his stall Sunday morning, with all unused equipment in place, after the team’s practice. The locker room door was closed for longer than usual after practice ended, and player interviews were rushed.
A law enforcement source said Kane is represented by Buffalo attorney Paul J. Cambria. Cambria, when contacted Sunday, declined to comment.
The Sabres released the following statement:
“We take the allegation made today against Evander Kane very seriously. We are gathering facts and have been in touch with the NHL and Evander’s representatives. Until we have more information we will not have any additional comment.”
Evander Kane’s agent, Craig Oster of Newport Sports Management, did not return calls for comment.
One of the law enforcement sources recalled the rape allegation against South Buffalo native and NHL superstar Patrick Kane earlier this year that was ultimately dropped because investigators were not convinced he had committed a crime.
The source stressed that police were not naming the alleged suspect in Sunday’s incident publicly because of the intense publicity generated by the Patrick Kane investigation and the need for investigators to do their jobs.
The other two sources pointed out that the investigation into Sunday’s alleged incident is in its very early stages.
For months, Patrick Kane, the Chicago Blackhawks star, was the subject of intense scrutiny by detectives in the Town of Hamburg and investigators in the Erie County District Attorney’s Office after a young woman accused him of attacking and sexually assaulting her in his lakeside home in early August.
Patrick Kane, 26, denied the allegations and also hired Cambria to represent him. The young woman in that case hired attorney Thomas Eoannou.
In a bizarre turn of events, the accuser’s attorney held a news conference to accuse law enforcement officials of mishandling evidence, but the next day he announced that his earlier accusation had been wrong and that he had been deceived by the woman’s mother. He then withdrew from the case.
Ultimately, with the help of DNA evidence, Patrick Kane and his legal team prevailed in early November, when Erie County District Attorney Frank J. Sedita announced there would be no charges.
Evander Kane, a Vancouver native, has eight goals and five assists in 25 games in his first season on the Sabres since joining the team from the Winnipeg Jets.
Evander Kane, who arrived in Buffalo via trade in February, has been doing well to fit in with the Sabres after a tumultuous stay with his previous team. He repeatedly asked for trades from Winnipeg and was finally dealt after a reported locker-room incident with teammates that included his clothes being thrown into a shower.
In October, Evander Kane rented a helicopter and took two Sabres teammates to Toronto for a baseball playoff game. He has also tried to reshape his image by donating time and money to the Boys & Girls Club of Buffalo. Evander Kane took 60 children to dinner and to an arcade in November, and this month he treated 50 kids from the club to dinner and a $10,000 Christmas shopping spree at Target.
Evander Kane scored a goal Saturday night during a game against the Boston Bruins, in Boston. The team’s next game is at home Monday against the Washington Capitals.
News reporters John Vogl and Joseph Popiolkowski contributed to this report. email: firstname.lastname@example.org and email@example.com