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Penn State Fencing Coach Facing 3-Year Suspension For Alleged Misconduct

Penn State fencing coach Wes Glon now faces a three-year suspension following his alleged failure to report on sexual misconduct allegations levied against a former assistant coach.

In a statement, Penn State Athletics said Glon was placed on interim suspension pending further review.

According to its website, the U.S. Center for SafeSport, a nonprofit focused on protecting minors and student-athletes from abuse, issued a three-year suspension for Glon. USA Fencing also added Glon to a list of individuals under temporary suspension.

Retroactive to August 16, Glon is prohibited from participating in events affiliated with the U.S. Olympic and Paralympic Committee, the USOPC’s governing bodies, local affiliated organizations, and any Paralympic sports organization.

Glon’s suspension is not finalized. Disciplinary measures toward him are subject to appeal.

Jennifer Oldham, a North Carolina-based fencing club owner, filed an affidavit on June 15 and claimed Glon and former Penn State assistant coach George Abashidze conspired to defame her after she made allegations of sexual misconduct toward Abashidze. He was placed on administrative leave from Penn State in 2018 and later let go by the team following unrelated allegations of sexual abuse.

In her affidavit, Oldham says she sat next to Abashidze on a flight in 2017, during which he, while allegedly intoxicated, “persisted with sexual overtures” for hours, escalating in physical assault. She claims his comments included sexual and inappropriate remarks about former students and his wife.

Oldham also said Abashidze asked to have sex with her. When she declined, he allegedly assaulted her.

Although the alleged abuse was witnessed by a fencing equipment vendor seated near Oldham on the flight, she wrote she was unsure how to proceed due to Abashidze’s “prominence” within the sport. She sought advice from her fencing mentor, Ed Korfanty, who passed Oldham’s allegations on to Glon.

Glon and Abashidze later met with Oldham in January 2018 to discuss the alleged misconduct. She said they attempted to intimidate and silence her, implying others wouldn’t believe her claims.

In the affidavit, Oldham also wrote that Glon didn’t intend on reporting the alleged misconduct. She said Glon urged Abashidze to apologize and said an apology would be enough to “drop the matter” entirely.

Oldham now claims the two coaches launched a “defamation campaign” against her that persists today. She said she’s experienced harassment both in person and online from colleagues in the fencing community.

Oldham alleges she’s felt “unwelcome” at social gatherings and competitive events. She wrote that social pressure can prevent those in the fencing community from attending events that help forge bonds and relationships.

Oldham also wrote that her fencing club in North Carolina has lost students due to defamation against her. She said she’s currently working with a lawyer to continue protecting herself from alleged defamation.

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About the Author

Matt DiSanto

Matt proudly served as Onward State’s managing editor for two years until graduating from Penn State with distinction in May 2022. Now, he’s off in the real world doing real things. Send him an email ([email protected]) or follow him on Twitter (@mattdisanto_) to stay in touch.

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