A former National Hockey League player and Las Vegas Wrangler was sentenced Wednesday to four to 16 years in prison for molesting a girl under 14 years of age over a four-year period.
With his voice cracking, Michael McBain, who in September pleaded guilty to attempted sexual assault and attempted lewdness with a child as part of a deal with prosecutors, apologized for his actions.
"I'm more sorry than words can describe. I take full responsibility for what I did," said McBain, who played for the Tampa Bay Lightning from 1997 to 1999 and for the Wranglers from 2003 to 2008.
The hockey player told District Judge David Barker he would respect whatever sentence the judge handed down.
During the sentencing hearing, McBain's lawyer, Robert Draskovich, asked that his client be sentenced to the minimum two to eight years in prison.
Draskovich said McBain, since first confronted with the allegations, accepted responsibility and asked to negotiate the case so the victim would not have to go through a trial.
McBain also wrote apology letters to the victim and the victim's parent for his actions, the defense lawyer said.
He also enrolled in sex offense counseling befores being sentenced, Draskovich said.
"Mr. McBain is a very good man who did a very bad thing," Draskovich said.
Prosecutor Marc Schifalacqua suggested a sentence of five to 15 years in prison would be appropriate.
"Quite simply, what happened here was horrible," Schifalacqua said. The victim's "never going to get over this. The scars of the sexual abuse will not heal for her for the rest of her life."
Before handing down his sentence, Barker noted that McBain was originally charged with nine felonies, which could have netted him 35 years to life in prison.
Barker also ordered McBain to register as a sex offender and be placed on lifetime supervision.
The victim did not attend the hearing, but her parents did.
Las Vegas police detailed the case in a six-page arrest report that alleged McBain began sexually assaulting the girl in 2008, when she was 12.
He turned himself in to police July 5 after recovering from a suicide attempt in Oregon, according to the report.
After retiring from the Wranglers in 2008, McBain became their assistant coach during the 2008-09 season.
McBain noticed the girl had a crush on a Wranglers player, so he created a false email account in the player's name and used it to contact her and send lewd photographs, according to the police report.
A defenseman from British Columbia, Canada, McBain drifted among minor league hockey teams before being drafted by the Lightning in the second round of the 1995 NHL Draft.
He played 64 games in the NHL over two seasons before returning to the minor league circuit and finding a home with the Wranglers.
Contact reporter Francis McCabe at fmccabe@review journal.com or 702-380-1039.