5 Olympics storylines to know from COVID-19 protocols to new starsThe Tokyo Olympics shall be some of the distinctive in historical past. This is the place the video games stand with no followers, strict COVID-19 protocols and new sports activities.Sandy Hooper and Jasper Colt, USA TODAYTOKYO — A U.S. Olympic fencer beneath investigation for allegations of sexual misconduct is collaborating on the Tokyo Olympics however going through restrictions his attorneys say are arbitrary and pointless, based on a criticism obtained by USA TODAY Sports activities.America Olympic and Paralympic Committee (USOPC) and USA Fencing say the restrictions are a matter of security.Alen Hadzic, the 29-year-old fencer, was quickly suspended in June by the U.S. Heart for SafeSport after three ladies instructed investigators Hadzic dedicated sexual misconduct towards them between 2013 and 2015, based on the criticism filed with the USOPC.An arbitrator overturned the short-term suspension final month, permitting Hadzic to affix the U.S. Olympic fencing group. Nevertheless, USA Fencing is limiting Hadzic’s motion in Tokyo, together with forcing him to remain at a lodge whereas the group is on the Olympic Village, based on the criticism. Hadzic is asking the USOPC to instantly carry the measures with the opening ceremony for the Video games scheduled for Friday.An arbitration listening to is tentatively set for Thursday, mentioned legal professional Michael Palma, who’s representing Hadzic.Palma says USA Fencing has recognized of the allegations made by the three ladies “for years’’ and has by no means put a restriction in place for Hadzic whereas he has competed everywhere in the world with USA Fencing groups. The actions have been characterised by USA Fencing as a part of a “security plan,” based on the criticism. USA Fencing and the USOPC declined to remark, citing the continued investigation.Hadzic denied the allegations of sexual misconduct throughout a cellphone interview with USA TODAY Sports activities.“Frankly, they’re untruths,” Hadzic mentioned. “They’re simply frankly not true.’’At an arbitration listening to on June 28 requested by Hadzic, SafeSport offered proof and arguments that Hadzic dedicated sexual misconduct towards three ladies in separate incidents between 2013 and 2015, in violation of SafeSport code. SafeSport, which opened in March 2017 to research sexual abuse in Olympic sports activities, offered an extra report that Hadzic violated the identical code in 2019, leading to USA Fencing inserting him on probation by the closing ceremony of the Tokyo Video games, based on the criticism. Decide Sherrie L. Krauser, who presided over the arbitration listening to, lifted the suspension and, based on the paperwork, acknowledged, “I discover that the ‘short-term suspension’ is inappropriate to the allegations. Particularly, I discover that the shortage of any allegation of misconduct previously two years, the persevering with probation supervision of USA Fencing and the strict regulation of members of the U.S. Olympic group present enough ensures to the ‘security or well-being’ of others to carry the short-term suspension.“Additional, I don’t discover it seemingly that (Mr. Hadzic)’s continued participation can be detrimental to the popularity of america or his sport. For these causes, I discover that the short-term suspension is lifted as not warranted by the details and circumstances of the allegations.” Krauser upheld a directive that prohibits Hadzic from contacting the three ladies and deferred a last ruling till a full listening to might be held. A date for the total listening to was not listed within the criticism. After Krauser’s ruling, USA Fencing issued Hadzic a “discover” outlining restrictions that might be in place for him through the Olympics, based on the criticism. USA Fencing stipulated that Hadzic would fly to Tokyo on July 18, two days after his teammates. “Essentially, (USA Fencing) needs to cover Mr. Hadzic and maintain him from collaborating within the Olympic expertise that he has rightfully earned,” his attorneys wrote within the criticism. “(USA Fencing) states that they’re required to segregate Mr. Hadzic from the Olympic expertise with a view to ‘improve events’ bodily and emotional security all through an investigation, help a good and impartial course of, and assist in prevention of retaliatory behaviors from all events.” However the criticism notes that Hadzic is the one social gathering in Tokyo concerned within the investigation and argues the restrictions “are merely meant to sanction Mr. Hadzic for being concerned in an ongoing investigation by SafeSport.”Hadzic mentioned he has been maintaining to himself throughout group meals however that the reception was hotter than anticipated.“I didn’t know what the environment can be like till I got here right here, after which after I truly received to the coaching facility all the coaches shook my hand and congratulated me on making the group,” Hadzic mentioned. “The entire fencers that I believed can be afraid to talk with me, all got here as much as me and mentioned hello. Even the ladies.”One of many ladies who reported Hadzic for sexual misconduct did so in 2013 when each had been attending Columbia and competing for the varsity’s fencing group, Hadzic confirmed. He was suspended from the varsity for a yr on account of a Title IX investigation.One other girl mentioned she instructed a SafeSport investigator that Hadzic groped her in 2015. The lady instructed USA TODAY Sports activities she and a feminine fencing teammate at Columbia had been strolling residence when Hadzic pulled up in a automotive and requested them to return again to his place. She mentioned she was conscious of the earlier sexual misconduct allegation towards Hadzic and agreed to go to his place solely as a result of her pal wished to go and he or she didn’t need her pal to be alone. THE LATEST IN TOKYO: Join our Olympic publication to get unique insightUSA TODAY Sports activities coverage is to not determine people who allege sexual misconduct even in circumstances when the allegations don’t rise to the extent of a criminal offense.“I feel one case is sufficient so that you can not be allowed to compete on the f—— Olympics,” the second girl instructed USA TODAY Sports activities. “It actually makes you query how far somebody must go to ensure that them not to have the ability to compete.’’ Hadzic, who lives in New Jersey and since 2016 has represented america in a number of occasions, is the lads’s epee alternative athlete. As an alternate, he’ll compete provided that one among his teammates is unable to do so.The boys’s epee competitors is about to start Sunday.Kris Ekeren, CEO of USA Fencing, mentioned that USA Fencing didn’t have the authority to take motion after SafeSport launched its investigation into Hadzic, based on the criticism that included contents of an e mail Ekeren despatched to Hadzic July 13. Her e mail acknowledged that SafeSport’s unique jurisdiction over the allegations prevents USA Fencing from conducting parallel disciplinary proceedings or imposing sanctions of its personal that might forestall Hadzic from collaborating within the Tokyo Video games. “Nonetheless, group athletes have expressed issues for his or her security and well-being arising out of your presence, which they are saying are more likely to adversely have an effect on their psychological and emotional skills to arrange and compete on the highest ranges required for fulfillment within the Olympic Video games,” learn Ekeren’s e mail to Hadzic. “A number of have requested that USA Fencing put measures in place to maintain them protected and decrease distractions from coaching and competitors. Accordingly, USA Fencing, along with the USOPC, will implement a security plan for the upcoming Olympic Video games.”Hadzic mentioned staying at a lodge that is a 25-minute drive from Olympic Village has undermined his expertise and preparation.“I don’t have that have that I earned,” he mentioned.