Archbishop Wood assistant coach resigns in gay-attack case

Posted: September 19, 2014

This story has been updated.

AN ASSISTANT basketball coach at Archbishop Wood High School resigned late Wednesday because of his alleged involvement in last Thursday's savage attack on two gay men in Center City, the Archdiocese of Philadelphia said Thursday.

The coach, identified by a source close to the team as Fran McGlinn, had been "serving as a coach on a contract basis," said Kenneth Gavin, a spokesman for the Archdiocese.

McGlinn, 25, along with several other former Wood students, allegedly participated in an attack on a gay couple as the men were walking near Rittenhouse Square.

"He was terminated this evening and will not be permitted to coach in any archdiocesan school," Gavin said. "We expect all those who work with students in our schools to model appropriate Christian behavior at all times."

In a statement issued Thursday morning, Archbishop Charles Chaput said the coach resigned after being contacted by school leadership about the incident.

"Archbishop Wood’s handling of the matter was appropriate, and I support their efforts to ensure that Catholic convictions guide the behavior of their whole school community, including their staff," Chaput said.

Meanwhile Wednesday, police sources told the Daily News that at least a few of the alleged assailants had been interviewed by investigators.

Some of those "persons of interest" were seen walking into the Central Detective Division late last night with their lawyers.

No arrests had been made in the case as of last night.

McGlinn graduated from Wood, in Warminster, Bucks County, in 2007. He was a key member of the Wood Vikings, and persevered on the court despite being diagnosed with hypertrophic cardiomyopathy, a debilitating heart condition.

"The doctors told me that I could never play basketball again," McGlinn wrote in an online profile. "However, I still stayed on my high school and AAU teams and went to every game and practice."

The two victims of the attack told police that a group of about 12 twentysomethings, dressed for a night on the town, crossed paths with them on 16th Street near Chancellor just before 11 p.m. Thursday.

Someone in the group allegedly confronted one of the men, asking him if his companion was "his f---ing boyfriend."

A fight broke out, during which the men were savagely beaten. One victim suffered multiple facial fractures and his jaw had to be wired shut, the victims told the Daily News.

The victims, and many of their supporters, have described the violent act as a hate crime, but the District Attorney's Office said yesterday that the case may not fit that standard. State law on hate crimes does not include sexual orientation.

- Staff writer Morgan Zalot contributed to this report.


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