Former NHLer Sean Avery found guilty of bashing car with scooter

Former New York Rangers hothead Sean Avery was found guilty of criminal mischief Thursday for using a scooter to hit a car that was blocking a bike lane in Manhattan.

Judge Marisol Martinez-Alonso sentenced the 42-year-old to time served following a two-day bench trial in Manhattan Criminal Court.

The pugnacious player left the courthouse wearing sunglasses and smiling after the verdict, but did not comment on the judge’s decision.

Martinez-Alonso, who presided over the case without a jury, also issued orders of protection for all victims involved.

Avery — a fierce protector of bike lanes — was charged for bashing the driver’s side door of a minivan with his scooter at East Eighth Street and Broadway in Greenwich Village on Feb. 23, 2019.

He testified Thursday that he was “just trying to avoid hitting” the car in the bike lane.

“It was somewhere in front of me. As I was breaking I was moving in a straight direction,” he told the judge.

Avery admitted to screaming at the passengers, but said he changed his tune when he realized a child was in the car.

“It was three years ago, I can’t exactly remember whether the vehicle was damaged….As soon as I saw the kids, everything, just you know, changed.”

He also admitted to mocking the motorist, venture capitalist Jonathan Schulhof, for being bald.

Avery said he was notified by Rangers security that he was on a wanted poster following the incident and he then spoke to a detective who asked him to come down to the station.

Schulhof, who was in the car with his wife and then-4-year-old daughter, testified about the incident Wednesday, telling the judge that “a very agitated person started screaming vulgarities at me and just telling me, you know, ‘Why don’t you watch where the eff you’re going.”

The businessman testified that Avery cursed him out but “it was very startling, so I don’t really have a great record of exactly what he said.”

After the two exchanged words, Schulhof then “heard what sounded like a stick of dynamite go off, a really loud boom, and felt the car shaking.”

The attack left a “quarter-sized hole” in the door of the car next to where Schulhof’s four-year-old daughter was sitting, he said.

In his closing argument, Avery’s lawyer Jason Goldman focused on the fact that Schulhof had said he didn’t actually see Avery hit the car.

Prosecutors rebutted by saying all the evidence points to Avery bashing the car with the scooter.

Avery, who retired from the NHL in 2012, Avery was somewhat belligerent with the press on Thursday, and derided a reporter asking him questions.

Prosecutors had offered the hothead a series of plea deals, but he did not accept them and instead opted for a trial. He had been facing up to three months in prison.

Igor Burdetskiy

Igor Burdetskiy

Founder, Editor-in-Chief, & CEO at Hooked on Hockey Magazine
I grew up playing Ball and Roller Hockey day and night somewhat religiously throughout elementary and middle school. The two don't compare though when I lace up the skates and hit the ice. I live and breathe hockey beyond the perspective of "it's just a game" and I will gladly talk hockey for hours with anyone. Hockey is more than just a lifestyle, it's a culture of passionate people who make memories every time the puck is dropped. Hockey has not only helped me get through some of the hardest times in life but has created some of the best memories to date. Want to talk hockey with me? Shoot me an email: iburdetskiy@hookedonhockey.com and let's talk some hockey!
Igor Burdetskiy
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