Photo via Pixabay
Photo via Pixabay

A “sick and destructive” former basketball coach who pleaded no contest to sex charges with six teen boys he met while working at two schools, including the Albert Einstein Academy in Santa Clarita, was sentenced Thursday to 17 years and eight months behind bars.

Los Angeles Superior Court Judge Sam Ohta also ordered Randolph Jackson, 29, to register as a sex offender for the rest of his life and barred him from contacting any of the boys for 10 years.

The sentence came after the judge heard what he called “very, very touching” statements from the victims’ family members as the boys sat in the back row of the downtown courtroom.

“You came into our lives and made yourself important … You betrayed that trust,” the mother of two of the victims said, speaking directly to the former coach.

Another victim’s mother called him a “sick and destructive man” and a “professional pedophile” who had chosen a field in which he could groom his victims before molesting them.

“You know what you did is horribly wrong,” she said.

The mother of another victim noted that her son withdrew more and more from his family after they agreed to allow Jackson to stay at their home.

“Randy, I believed in you and I backed you and I fund-raised for you,” she said, noting that her son “felt safe enough to talk for the first time” after the family was notified that Jackson had been suspended by the Albert Einstein Academy.

“You threw away an amazing career and future,” she told Jackson.

In a statement read on behalf of one of the victims, Jackson was told he made the boy believe the former coach was like a family member.

“You failed to take me and the rest of us down,” the boy said in the statement.

Just as jury selection was set to begin in his trial, Jackson pleaded no contest May 16 to one felony count each of continuous sexual abuse, oral copulation of a person under 16 and lewd act on a child, along with four misdemeanor counts of indecent exposure and two misdemeanor counts of child molesting.

The charges involved six boys between the ages of 13 and 17 between November 2010 and January 2015.

Jackson met the boys while working as a basketball coach at Albert Einstein Academy, a public charter school in Santa Clarita, and another school. The Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office declined to name the second school.

Jackson had been suspended as a coach at the academy prior to his arrest on Feb. 18, 2015, in Washington, D.C. He has remained behind bars since then.

—City News Service

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