By Marty Farmer
Anthony Collaro, a former Concordia University student athlete, is suing the school and former Cougars baseball coach, Spiro Lempesis. According to the lawsuit, filed on Tuesday in Cook County Circuit Court, Collaro claims that Lempesis promised to help him pursue his aspirations of becoming a professional baseball player in exchange for performing sex acts on video.
The lawsuit alleges that Lempesis filmed Collaro performing sexual acts 20-30 times in the coach's office at the Concordia gymnasium between June 2008 and June 2009. The lawsuit further details that Lempesis allegedly lied to Collaro by claiming he would edit the video footage and sell it to a California-based porn company for profit, with the money earmarked to help promote Collaro's baseball career.
According to the suit, when Collaro was a sophomore on the Concordia baseball team, Lempesis promised to contact a player and multiple agents associated with major league organizations, including the Cincinnati Reds, Philadelphia Phillies, Tampa Bay Rays and Pittsburgh Pirates. The suit maintains that Collaro never saw any professional scouts at Concordia games, nor was he contacted by any professional baseball personnel.
When he refused to perform a sexual act with Lempesis on video, Collaro alleges in the lawsuit, his playing time with the Cougars was reduced.
"This man took my life and turned it upside down," Collaro said, in a press release issued by the law firm Romanucci and Blandin representing him. "He treated me like a piece of garbage. I trusted him. All he did was lie to me. Nobody has been held accountable for what this man has done."
Prior to their time spent together within the Concordia baseball program, Collaro participated in a baseball summer camp in 2010 when he was 10 years old, with Lempesis serving as one of the camp's coaches.
After working as Concordia's baseball coach for a decade, Lempesis was fired in September 2010. At the time, the university said Lempesis' termination was due to allegations of sexual misconduct.
Eric Matanyi, Concordia's assistant vice president for communications and marketing, said the university had no comment on the lawsuit at this time. Collaro's lawyer, Antonio Romanucci, could not be immediately reached for comment.