A Massachusetts hockey coach has been indicted for child rape, according to the Essex County District Attorney's Office.
Christopher Prew, the owner of Hot Shot Academy, which trains young athletes, primarily hockey players, was indicted for aggravated rape of a child and four counts of indecent assault and battery on a child under 14.
The indictments allege the 31-year-old, of Marblehead, indecently assaulted and orally raped a 9-year-old boy on various dates between Sept. 1, 2017 and Jan. 31, 2018.
The 9-year-old boy told his mother who then notified Marblehead police.
Prew was arrested on Thursday and he was arraigned in Lynn District Court on Friday. He was ordered held without bail pending a dangerousness hearing this Wednesday.
"This is devastating news," said a family member of Prew's who did not want to be identified. "I will say innocent until proven guilty should apply to any such case."
Prew's family says he's been a popular coach with no problems in the past.
"People love him," said the woman who did not want to be identified. "All I've ever heard is positive things in terms of the families that have been involved in his program, the kids that have been involved in his program."
The hockey academy has not responded to a request for comment.
The district attorney's office said Prew provides private and group hockey coaching sessions in the area but is not affiliated with the Marblehead Youth Hockey Association. His LinkedIn profile says he also works with lacrosse and baseball players.
He is represented by attorney Sean Donahue.
In a statement late Monday night, Donahue responded to a request for comment saying, Prew and his family "are devastated by these alarming accusations."
Donahue added that Prew, "coincidentally, is very well-respected in his community" and noted his client entered a plea of not guilty "to these disturbing charges" in court.
Prew's attorney ended his statement saying, "Over the next several weeks, my client, who, until recently, was intimately involved with the mother of the child, and I will closely examine these horrific accusations. While child abuse laws aim to protect children, the justice system is set up to vindicate those who are wrongfully accused. We expect that Mr. Prew will eventually be vindicated!"