Saeed and Little, LLP has filed two cases against USA Fencing in state court in Arizona. USA Fencing, like its fellow National Governing Body USA Swimming, uses inadequate background checks to allow violent adults to coach children. One of the cases was written about here: http://www.courthousenews.com/2015/03/26/young-fencer-says-coach-was-abusive.htm
Prosecutors hold a tremendous opportunity to do good for collective society, starting with the decision of which cases to prosecute. Prosecutors work on behalf of the people they litigate to advance the interests of all of us. No one can argue that prosecuting murders, rapists, child molesters, drug dealers and thieves is a proper function of the Prosecutor’s office. It would only be logical that Prosecutors should prosecute those people who may not commit the actual crime but enable those that do.
Absurdly, Prosecutors in San Diego have commenced prosecution against a rapper they allege benefitted from a murder, in the form of increased sales, because said rapper is allegedly part of a gang. http://america.aljazeera.com/articles/2015/3/16/rap-prosecution.html
Sadly, Prosecutors seem willing to prosecute absurd cases like this against poor people but have universally given passes to bankers who have directly laundered billions for drug cartels.
Prosecutors nationwide have been reluctant to prosecute the politically connected whether they be USA Swimming executives and Catholic Bishops who protected pedophiles within their ranks for decades, or bankers who put profits ahead of doing the right thing and laundered literally tons of cash for international drug syndicates.
Poor people, especially poor people of color make easy targets; bankers and the politically connected bring armies of lawyers. It is time for District Attorneys to do the right thing and not simply cruise down the path of least resistance.
Matthew Carrington, the most recent in a long line of USA Swimming coaches to be caught behaving inappropriately with one of the young swimmers in his care, has been charged with Child Seduction. But what does that mean?
The crime of Child Seduction is codified at IC § 35-42-4-7, and Carrington was charged under subsection (m). Here’s the language:
(m) If a person who:
(1) is at least eighteen (18) years of age; and
(2) is the:
(A) guardian, adoptive parent, adoptive grandparent, custodian, or stepparent of;
(B) child care worker for;
engages with the child in sexual intercourse, other sexual conduct (as defined in IC 35-31.5-2-221.5), or any fondling or touching with the intent to arouse or satisfy the sexual desires of either the child or the adult, the person commits child seduction.
That “other sexual conduct” referenced “means an act involving: (1) a sex organ of one person and the mouth or anus of another person; or (2) the penetration of the sex organ or anus of a person by an object.”
So if there has to be touching of some kind to make up the crime of Child Seduction, how is it different from Child Molesting (codified at IC § 35-42-4-3)? Even though Child Molesting also requires “sexual intercourse or other sexual conduct (as defined in IC 35-31.5-2-221.5),” there are a few important distinctions.
Generally speaking, Child Molesting applies when the victim is under 14-years-old and the perpetrator can be anyone. Child Molesting can range between a Level 4 to Level 1 Felony, depending on the circumstances. Child Seduction, on the other hand, involves a victim between 16- and 18-years-old and a perpetrator who is in some sort of position of trust with, or has some sort of authority over the victim. The crime of Child Seduction ranges from a Level 5 to a Level 6 Felony in Indiana.
Even with their differences, the crimes are equally horrific. It is sad to say, but I have worked on many Swim Coach abuse cases and have seen how the hurt and betrayal felt by the athletes (and their parents) are wounds that can never fully heal.
Identity theft is a very real and scary issue for citizens. Every year, 15 million people are affected, involving over $50 billion in damages. It is important to take basic precautions and securities to guard against victimization of identity theft, and to be diligent in monitoring your credit score, personal records, and financial statements. If you have been a victim of identity theft, it is crucial to understand your rights and access to assistance. The Fair Credit Reporting Act (“FCRA”) is a federal law that outlines the rights and regulations associated with a consumers’ credit information. In terms of identity theft, a brief summary of your rights are as follows:
Seven years ago, I moved to Indiana to focus my law practice on fixing an epidemic plaguing USA Swimming: coaches molesting young swimmers. Since that time, I have worked on, and become aware of, countless USA Swimming Coach molestation cases all over the United States. My partners and I have uncovered a culture of sexual abuse inside swimming that has protected known sexual predator coaches for decades. The latest coach to be arrested, Matthew Carrington, is the sixth Marion County USA Swimming coach arrested since 2008.
People often ask me if I have more swimming cases than other sports – the answer is a resounding, “yes.” Despite the changes forced upon swimming by their insurance carriers, the United States Congress, and our litigation, the culture of swimming creates an environment perfect for child molesters. Young boys grow up swimming and see their coaches having sexual relationships with their athletes and think, “When I get to be a swim coach, I will get to date the 16-year-old girls who are dating our 35-year-old coach now.” Mr. Carrington worked for Andy Pedersen at the Southeastern Swim Club (http://swimswam.com/
Mr. Pederson is not the only Indianapolis Swim Coach to look the other way when it comes to the sexual abuse of children. Carmel Swimming Coach legend Ray Lawrence molested swimmers and was protected by a culture of silence in Central Indiana for almost twenty years. Mr. Lawrence was separated from the Carmel Schools, but the future school corporations he worked for had no idea of his sordid past until litigation in California revealed his past and that information was shared with local media. Sadly, to this day USA Swimming keeps a secret “flagged list” of known molester coaches — a list I have never seen.
Mr. Carrington is the most recent in a long line of USA Swimming Coaches in Indiana who are modeling what they saw in the sick culture of USA Swimming in Indiana. Accepting and admitting that your friends and mentors are child molesters is painful, but we owe it to our children to fix a broken culture that refuses to change or police itself. The impact of child molestation is enormous — young victims often have difficulty trusting future lovers and partners, or worse they blame themselves for what happened and inflict harm upon themselves. I beg coaches, teachers, parents, and athletes, if you know of an inappropriate sexual relationship, where an adult is abusing his position of power over a child, please report it. If you have questions or need help, please call my office and I will be happy to get you in touch with the United States Attorney’s office or the appropriate local prosecutor’s office.