Top Flyers prospect Cousins charged with sexual assault

Cousins
Cousins
Posted: August 28, 2012

LESS THAN 2 months after impressing at July's rookie camp, Flyers top prospect Nick Cousins is in the headlines again. This time, it is for the wrong reasons.

According to police in Sault Ste. Marie, Ontario, Cousins, 19, and Soo Greyhounds teammates Mark Petaccio and Andrew Fritsch were charged with sexual assault on Saturday against "a female known to them."

Cousins and Fritsch, a 2011 Coyotes draft pick, have been released and are due in court on Oct. 1, said police. Petaccio will appear in bail court on Monday.

Flyers general manager Paul Holmgren issued a statement on Sunday concerning the situation:

"We are aware of the unfortunate situation involving Nick Cousins. Due to lack of information available to us, we will not comment at this time."

According to Sgt. Marty Rowe, Cousins has been released into the custody of a surety on numerous conditions.

"The surety is the person he was released to," Rowe said. "They will be 'in charge' of monitoring those conditions and should Nick not do what he is supposed to do, this person is supposed to report that to us."

Cousins, a gritty center from Ontario, was drafted by the Flyers in the third round in 2011 with the 68th overall pick, one of selections acquired from Columbus in the Jeff Carter deal. He signed a 3-year, entry-level deal with the Flyers in March.

With so many young, former prospects already on the Flyers roster, Cousins is considered by many to be the team's top prospect. He played in 65 games for the Greyhounds last year and totaled 35 goals and 53 assists for 88 points, good for fifth in the OHL.

He is listed at a mere 5-11 and just north of 170 pounds, but Cousins is known for his ability to agitate opponents. He turned some heads at rookie camp in July and appeared to be on the fast track to the NHL.

Regarding the specifics of the charges, the Sault Ste. Marie police said details were unlikely to be released prior to Cousins' date in court.

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