Bayonne PAL being sued over alleged sexual abuse by basketball coach over 50 years ago


The Bayonne Police Athletic League (PAL) is being sued over a basketball coach allegedly repeatedly sexually assaulting a 10- or 11-year-old boy on the team over 50 years ago.

Photo via Google Maps.

By John Heinis/Hudson County View

“In approximately 1968 or 1969, when Plaintiff was between ten (10) and eleven (11) years old, Plaintiff was a member of Defendant Bayonne PAL’s basketball team, coached by [John] Hunter,” the lawsuit, filed in Hudson County Superior Court in Wednesday, says.

” … Upon Plaintiff’s arrival to Hunter’s home, Hunter would sexually abuse the Plaintiff––forcibly removing the Plaintiff’s clothes, touching and fondling the Plaintiff’s genitals, and forcing the Plaintiff to participate in oral sex against his will.”

The court filing further states that the plaintiff, only identified by as JB, would have to appear at Hunter’s house before every basketball game and be subject to sexual abuse in order to participate in games.

Furthermore, the suit says JB was also sexually assaulted in the back seat of Hunter’s car and this behavior occurred about 10 to 15 times in ones calendar year.

Approximately 3 to 4 years after the plaintiff was subjected to abuse, Hunter was arrested and eventually convicted of child molestation charges, according to the lawsuit.

“As a direct and proximate result of Hunter’s sexual abuse, Plaintiff suffered severe emotional distress, humiliation, anguish, trauma, and mental suffering. Plaintiff has suffered with depression, sexual orientation issues, and suicidal ideations,” JB’s attorney, Matthew Shock, wrote.

“Plaintiff has sought therapy and mental health treatment as a result of the abuse he suffered at a young age at the hands of Hunter. He has suffered from this trauma and anguish throughout his entire life and will continue to do so.”

The five-count lawsuit alleges violation of the state’s Child Sex Abuse Act, negligence, negligent hiring training, supervision, and retention, as well as failure to warn and implement adequate child sex abuse policies.

For those reasons, the plaintiff is seeking damages, punitive damages, interest, costs of suit, attorney’s fees, and such other relief as the court deems just and equitable.


  1. Such a shame. I’m sorry he was abused like that as a boy and had to suffer from it for so long. There was so much silence then, he probably didn’t get the right counseling.

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