A 23-year-old swim coach at University High School in Irvine has pleaded guilty to statutory rape and was immediately sentenced to 15 days of community service in lieu of jail.
Coleman Michael Pickell was also placed on four years of formal probation, according to court records.
He had been arrested after the young woman victim’s parents found the two in a hotel room and called police.
After Pickell was arraigned in December, his attorney noted the victim in the case would turn 18 at the end of January. He said the sexual contact occurred a “few months shy of her 18th birthday.”
Two counts of sexual penetration of a minor, two counts of unlawful sex with a minor three years younger than the defendant and a single count of oral copulation of a minor, all felonies, were dismissed, according to court records.
Pickell was also a boys’ water polo coach at the school, but not a member of its teaching staff, according to Irvine police.
After Pickell was arrested in October, Irvine Unified School District officials said he was no longer a coach or had any contact with students at the school or throughout the district.
Pickell met the victim last summer, according to the Orange County District Attorney’s Office. He took the teen to a hotel room Oct. 8, prosecutors said. When her parents found her at the hotel the next morning they called police, prosecutors said.
—City News Service
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