By Lindsay Toler
By Chad Garrison
By Brett Koshkin
By RFT Staff
By Lindsay Toler
By Riverfront Times
By Danny Wicentowski
By Pete Kotz
Last time we wrote about Mike Danton, the former St. Louis Blues player was in federal prison and his agent, David Frost, had just launched a website on which Danton was to be a regular contributor.
That was back in January, and the website, Hockey God Online, never amounted to much. Danton (from what we could tell) never contributed to the site, which would make sense, seeing as how he was in prison for hiring a hit man to kill Frost!
But then, Danton's case never did make a helluva lot of sense. As the judge stated when he sentenced Danton in 2004: "In over eighteen years on the bench, I have never been faced with a case as bizarre as this one."
Danton's saga provided a new twist last month, when he appeared before a parole board after serving five years of his seven-and-a-half-year sentence.
Frost was not the target of the hit, Danton told the parole board. Instead, it was Danton's father — Steve Jefferson — from whom Danton had been estranged since he was fifteen. (In 2002, Danton changed his last name from Jefferson to Danton to further distance himself from his family.)
How could this be? Danton's parole hearing last month received scant coverage in St. Louis. But, according to the Associated Press, Danton told the parole board he was suffering from paranoia (brought on by sleeping pills and stimulants) and believed someone planned to murder him and his agent, Frost.
"Why on earth would you believe that?" board member Michael Crowley asked. "That's like talking about the bogeyman."
"Over the years there were conversations that pointed to someone who would have interest in ending my life and ending [Frost's] life," Danton said, adding he received "verbal confirmation" from a family member.
He told the hit man to kill someone who would be in his apartment over two days, and Crowley noted Frost was there at the time. But Danton said Frost wasn't the person he believed was coming to kill him.
"It's clear that you thought it was your father who would do you harm," Crowley said.
"Right," Danton replied.
Keep in mind it's not clear that Danton's father was even remotely near St. Louis at the time Danton tried to contract a hit man. Consider, too, how utterly wacko Danton's relationship is/was with Frost.
After Danton was arrested on charges of contracting to kill Frost, it was Frost who came to the hockey player's aid and became his jailhouse confidante. The two logged hours and hours of telephone calls, during which they discussed the case and, among other things, Danton's sex life.
It's not the first time the media and law enforcement have taken an interest in Frost's unusual relationship with his players.
Last November a judge in Canada acquitted Frost on charges of sexual exploitation stemming from a coaching gig he held in that country in mid-1990s.
According to reports, Frost shared an apartment with several of his teenage players at the time and often instructed the players to have sex with their girlfriends while he watched. One woman testified that Frost would allow her former boyfriend to have sex with her only if Frost also joined in on the action.
But back to Danton's parole hearing: After last month's strange confession that he wanted to kill his father, the parole board agreed to let Danton out of prison, believing that the former NHL player had benefited from therapy and would be a low risk.
The parole stipulation provides that he have no direct or indirect contact with his father and that he have no face-to-face contact with Frost — unless approved by the parole board.
For everyone's sake, let's hope the parole board keeps it that way.
Oh, and Danton says he wants to return to professional hockey. We shall see.
Take Me to Your Leader
Sadly, this story has nothing to do with a Borat sequel, though it does have all the trappings of farce.
Daily RFT has learned that St. Louis played host to a cadre of dignitaries from Turkmenistan during the week of October 5. The group was here to survey our government and educational system and meet with officials, including Alderwoman Phyllis Young and former state senator Harry Kennedy. As St. Louis Core, the website of Board of Aldermen President Lewis Reed, proclaimed:
"During their conversations with local elected officials, the Turkmenistan visitors mentioned how friendly everyone is and emphasized that St. Louis is a beautiful city that has many cultural attractions."
St. Louis Core also noted such factoids as:
The official language of Turkmenistan is Turkmen, though Russian is the "language of inter-ethnic communication."
Turkmenistan is mostly a desert.
The Central Asia country is roughly the size of California, with 4.8 million people.
Left out of the description, however, is this tidbit from Transparency International: Turkmenistan is the thirteenth most corrupt country in the world.
What's does that mean? It means our Turkmen guests should have felt right at home with St. Louis' corrupt senators, representatives and police.
Who knows? Perhaps we did teach them a thing or two after all.