Lady Justice 3 16-9A former girls’ high school basketball coach pleaded no contest Wednesday to nearly two dozen sex-related charges involving a teenage girl.

Joseph Alan Kikuchi –– who coached girls’ varsity basketball at Mark Keppel High School in Alhambra at the time — entered his plea to 12 counts of sexual penetration by a foreign object, five counts of lewd acts on a child and one count of oral copulation of a person under 16 — all felonies — along with five misdemeanor counts of child molestation.

The 57-year-old Monterey Park man is due back in an Alhambra courtroom for sentencing Feb. 9.

A judge will have to determine what sentence Kikuchi will face under his “open plea,” in which no sentence was negotiated with the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office.

Details of an inappropriate relationship between Kikuchi and a female student began circulating through the school in July 2015, according to Deputy District Attorney Rena Durrant.

A school staff member relayed the information two months later to law enforcement, which launched an investigation.

Kikuchi resigned his coaching post in September 2015. He was subsequently arrested and charged the following month with crimes occurring over a six-month period beginning in February 2015.

—City News Service

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