The strangest story in sports got stranger last week when Mike
Danton--the Blues center who federal prosecutors say tried to
hire a hit man to kill his agent and longtime mentor, David
Frost--made his first public comments since his arrest on April
16. On Friday, Danton called a St. Louis Post-Dispatch hockey
writer, Derrick Goold, from the Clinton County Jail, where he is
being held without bail while awaiting a July 20 trial, and read
a statement. In it the 23-year-old thanked the man he is accused
of wanting to kill. (Danton has pleaded not guilty to the
murder-for-hire charges.) Then Danton lashed out at his Brampton,
Ont., family, the Jeffersons, from whom he tried to distance
himself in 2002 by changing his name. "It is important to scratch
the surface and share a part of my life that I have hidden for so
long," Danton said. He claimed he was the victim of "constant
physical and emotional abuse" as a child and "was neglected of
[sic] many daily necessities, as well as the abandonment of love,
care and direction." He described squalid living conditions in
the Jefferson home, including a lack of toilet paper.
Danton's father, Stephen Jefferson, called the accusations
"bulls---, another scheme by Dave Frost to get the heat off him."
Jefferson maintains that Frost has had an unhealthy hold on his
son and other young hockey players. SI has learned that three
years ago, the Ontario Provincial Police investigated a complaint
that Frost sexually assaulted a 13-year-old boy at his cabin.
Last week a law enforcement source told SI that evidence,
including photographs, has been gathered, though no charges have
been brought. Frost, who set up the call between Danton and
Goold, did not return several calls from SI.
Prosecutors considered asking the judge to ban further contact
between Frost and Danton but didn't, leaving the door open for
Danton to continue to be advised by the man he allegedly
conspired to kill. --Stephen Cannella
COLOR PHOTO: HANS DERYK-NATIONAL POST/AP (FROST) NOT ME Frost (bottom left, in '99) denies Danton (mug shot, andfour days before his arrest) tried to have him killed.
COLOR PHOTO: CLINTON COUNTY JAIL/AP (DANTON) [See caption above]
COLOR PHOTO: TIM PARKER/REUTERS (DANTON ACTION) [See caption above]