Ottawa Senators assistant general manager Randy Lee resigned Tuesday amid charges of harassment stemming from an incident at the NHL scouting combine in May.
The team announced Lee’s resignation and added a search is underway to find his replacement. The team said it would have no further comment.
Lee had been suspended by the Senators since June. He said in a statement he’s unable to fulfill his responsibilities with the team while his legal case is ongoing.
“I have to think about my obligations to the hockey team,” Lee said. “They need an assistant general manager who can focus completely on the coming season. Until this matter is behind me, however, I’m not in a position to do that.”
Lee is accused of making lewd comments and rubbing the shoulders of a 19-year-old male shuttle driver at the combine in Buffalo, New York. He pleaded not guilty to the charges, and attorney Paul Cambria is seeking to have them dismissed.
The 56-year-old Lee was scheduled to appear in court in Buffalo on Wednesday to argue motions, but that was pushed back to Sept. 13. Cambria told The Associated Press on Tuesday he didn’t have any comment on Lee’s resignation except to say, “We’re just waiting on the judge to rule on the motion to have the case dismissed.”
When asked about Lee’s resignation, Charles Desmond, attorney for the shuttle driver, told the AP: “The (Senators) organization is doing the right thing to protect the public, its employees and other individuals who can be subjected to his actions.”
The Senators hired Buffalo lawyer Dennis Vacco to represent them in any legal proceedings regarding Lee moving forward.
Lee had been with the Senators for 23 years, including the past five as assistant GM and GM of the club’s American Hockey League affiliate.
“My suspension has given me more time to spend with my loved ones than ever before,” Lee said. “For the past 23 years, my family has taken a back seat to my career. My focus now is on putting them first.”