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Figure skating coach pleads not guilty to abusing girl

September 19, 2012

LAKE PLACID - A figure skating coach accused of fondling a 16-year-old girl in July 2011 in a Lake Placid hotel room pleaded not guilty in Essex County Supreme Court last week.

Genrikh Sretenski, 50, of Clarksville, Md., turned himself in to Ray Brook-based state police at 8 a.m. Friday. He was charged with first-degree sexual abuse, a class D felony; forcible touching, a class A misdemeanor; acting in a manner injurious to a child under the age of 17, a class A misdemeanor; and third-degree sexual abuse, a class B misdemeanor.

Sretenski was released from the Howard County Detention Center in Maryland last Tuesday after a New York state extradition request was denied. His attorney, Terry Kindlon of Albany, told the Enterprise that Sretenski and his wife drove from Maryland to Lake Placid overnight Thursday, met Kindlon and went to the state police barracks in Ray Brook, where he was taken into custody and processed.

Sretenski was then brought to Elizabethtown, where he was arraigned before Judge Richard Meyer, entered a plea of not guilty on all charges and was released on $50,000 bond. He's scheduled to appear in court again at 2:15 p.m. Dec. 6. Until then, Kindlon said, Sretenski was permitted to return to Maryland.

"(Sretenski) very emphatically states his innocence of this charge," Kindlon said. "Probably, at this juncture, there's not much more for me to say than that.

"We have today here in my office prepared a demand for discovery and a request for a bill of particulars. Normally, I have more time to get ready for an arraignment. Normally I serve those on the DA at the time of arraignment."

Sretenski allegedly kissed and fondled one of his figure skating students in Lake Placid, according to Essex County District Attorney Kristy Sprague. Authorities were alerted to the alleged abuse in November 2011 after a report was filed with Child Protective Services officials in Maryland, Sprague said.

In a separate lawsuit filed in Maryland, Sretenski is accused of fondling a teenage female figure skater in a Lake Placid hotel room while they were in town for a July 2011 competition. That's the same incident as with the criminal charge, Kindlon said.

"My understanding is that it arises from the exact same allegations," Kindlon said.

Assistant DA Michele Bowen is leading the case for the prosecution, Sprague said.

Sretenski competed in the 1988 Winter Olympics in Calgary as an ice dancer for the Soviet Union, placing fourth. He has also performed with Stars on Ice, a popular figure skating show that tours the U.S., starting with an annual performance in Lake Placid.

Contact Chris Morris at 891-2600 ext. 25 or



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