A California judge sentenced former coach Jaime Jimenez to over 36 years in state prison for on sexual assault charges. Jimenez, 48, served as a volunteer football coach at Franklin High School in Highland Park where he abused at least five boys from 2002 up to his arrest in 2015.
As first reported by The Los Angeles Times, authorities recounted in a 2016 preliminary hearing how Jimenez stalked and assaulted five victims ages 13 to 16. Both underage and adult witnesses testified that Jimenez offered the boys rides home from practice, bought them gifts, and invited them into his own home. There, Jimenez gave the boys alcohol and groomed the boys for his abuse. The victims allege he began with touching moved on to masturbation and finally to sodomy. One of the victims testified his abuse by Jimenez began when he was just 9-years-old.
The District Attorney’s office originally charged Jimenez with 32 felony accounts. Authorities dropped most of the charges, and Jimenez pleaded no contest to four felonies and one misdemeanor. These charges include two felony counts each of continuous sexual abuse of a child under 14 years old and lewd acts on a child 14 to 15 years old and one misdemeanor count of sexual battery.
In addition to Jimenez’s prison term, Los Angeles Superior Court Judge Ray G. Jurado sentence the perpetrator to lifetime registration as a sex offender. He also disallowed contact between Jimenez and any of the victims for 10 years.
Lawsuit Against School District
In addition to their testimony in this criminal cases, victims and adult witnesses are taking the case to civil court. An attorney representing several of the victims’ families has filed suit against the Los Angeles Unified School District. The suit alleges that school officials should have suspected and stopped inappropriate contact with at least one of the victims.
“Teachers and administrators would see [the victim] coming and going in [Jimenez’s] car, and they know that is against policy,” Finaldi said.
This lawsuit comes less than two years after courts ordered L.A. Unified, the same school district, to pay $6 million in a similar sexual abuse case.