Lakeland, FL – A shocking incident has rocked Lakeland High School in Florida as a track coach was arrested for allegedly attempting to engage in sexual contact with a 16-year-old student. The coach, identified as 40-year-old Jarvis Young, is also accused of not disclosing his HIV-positive status to the victim. The arrest was made by the Polk County Sheriff’s Office on Thursday, and Young now faces multiple charges.
Alleged Sexual Battery and Lack of Disclosure
According to the Polk County Sheriff’s Office, Young has currently been charged with sexual battery of a victim between the ages of 12 and 18 by a custodial authority. Additionally, he faces charges of lewd and lascivious acts by a person aged 24 or older on a victim between the ages of 16 and 17. He is also accused of abusing a child without bodily harm, interfering with the custody of a minor, and having sexual intercourse without informing his partner of his HIV-positive status.
Investigation and Victim’s Account
The investigation into Jarvis Young began on August 28, after a 16-year-old student at Lakeland High School approached the school resource deputy and reported the alleged sexual contact initiated by the track coach. The victim stated that Young had been giving him a massage when he removed the victim’s shorts and touched his private areas while attempting to perform a sex act. The victim managed to intervene and stop the act. The incident occurred two days before the victim’s interview and occurred inside a school building.
Past Incidents of Sexual Misconduct and Sheriff’s Response
Polk County Sheriff Grady Judd revealed that this was not the first time Young had faced allegations of inappropriate sexual behavior involving minors. In 2011, Young was charged with conspiracy to commit sexual battery by a person in authority, along with another individual. They were accused of picking up two juveniles they mentored and transporting them to Orlando, where the victims were sexually assaulted. However, the case was dropped due to the expiration of the statute of limitations.
In 2017, the Lakeland Police Department received a report from another juvenile alleging that Young had touched his thigh and unzipped his pants. However, no criminal charges were filed in that case.
Calls for Justice and Preventing Future Sexual Abuse Incidents
Sheriff Grady Judd strongly condemned Young’s actions, describing him as a predator with an alarming attraction to children. Judd emphasized that Young had used his position of authority to exploit a child for his personal illicit gratification. The sheriff called for Young to be incarcerated and permanently restricted from unsupervised contact with children.
As this case unfolds, authorities and the community are left grappling with the question of how to prevent such incidents and protect vulnerable individuals from potential harm.
Combating Predatory Behavior and Protecting Vulnerable Youth
In the wake of a shocking incident involving a Florida high school track coach arrested for sexual battery, we had the opportunity to sit down with school sex abuse attorney Michael Haggard, Esq., a local Florida-based child sexual assault lawyer, about what victims of high school sexual abuse, in general, can do with a civil case against liable parties. Learn more as we delve into the critical issues surrounding child safety, legal recourse, and the pursuit of justice.
Laurence Banville (LB): Thank you for joining us, Mr. Haggard. In light of recent events, many victims of high school sexual abuse may be wondering about their legal options. Can you shed some light on what they can do when it comes to pursuing a civil case against liable parties?
Michael Haggard (MH): Absolutely, Laurence. First and foremost, it’s important for victims to understand that they have rights and legal recourse. In cases of high school sexual abuse, civil litigation can be a powerful tool for seeking justice and holding accountable those responsible for the harm caused. It’s crucial for victims to consult with an experienced attorney who specializes in child sexual assault cases to navigate the complex legal process.
LB: What are some common grounds on which victims can pursue a civil case against liable parties?
MH: Victims may have various grounds to pursue a civil case, depending on the circumstances of the abuse. These can include claims of negligence, premises liability, failure to supervise, negligent hiring or retention, and even claims against schools or institutions for their inadequate response to reports of abuse. Each case is unique, and it’s essential to thoroughly investigate and gather evidence to build a strong legal foundation.
LB: What challenges do victims typically face when pursuing a civil case against liable parties?
MH: Victims of high school sexual abuse often face significant challenges when seeking justice through civil litigation. These can include the potential for intimidation or attempts to silence them, memory gaps or trauma-related issues affecting recall, and the need to establish a causal link between the abuse and any resulting harm. Additionally, statutes of limitations can vary, so it’s crucial for victims to consult with an attorney promptly to ensure their rights are protected.
LB: How can legal representation support victims throughout the civil litigation process?
MH: A knowledgeable and compassionate sexual abuse attorney can provide invaluable support to victims throughout the civil litigation process. They can guide victims through each step, from evidence collection and case preparation to negotiations and, if necessary, trial representation. They can fight for victims’ rights, advocate for fair compensation for the harm suffered, and provide a voice for those who have been silenced.
LB: Thank you, Mr. Haggard, for sharing your expertise on this important matter. It’s clear that victims of high school sexual abuse have legal options available to them, and seeking professional guidance is crucial in pursuing justice and holding accountable those responsible for such heinous acts.
MH: Absolutely, Laurence. It’s essential for victims to know that they are not alone and that there is support available to help them navigate the legal system. Together, we can work towards a safer future for our children and ensure that those who commit such crimes are held accountable to the fullest extent of the law.
Experienced Sexual Assault Lawyers Offer Free Consultations for Survivors
This conversation highlights the importance of legal recourse for victims of high school sexual abuse and emphasizes the role of attorneys in providing support, seeking justice, and holding accountable those responsible for such reprehensible acts. If you or a loved one has experienced school sex abuse, reach out today to learn more about your legal options.
Mr. Banville is a personal injury attorney who has experience in handling auto accidents, work injuries, medical malpractice, dog bites, slip and falls, and representing survivors and victims of sexual abuse. Mr. Banville is affiliated with law firms in Pennsylvania, New York, New Jersey, Delaware, D.C., and Maryland. Abuse Guardian