Former Lyndhurst football coach admits sex with student
A 40-year old former Lyndhurst football coach plead guilty earlier this month to having oral sex with a 17-year-old student. As part of a plea agreement with the Bergen County Prosecutor’s office, the defendant will avoid jail time but will be forced to register under Megan’s Law and will be banned from serving as a teacher or coach in the future. As part of his guilty plea, he admitted to having oral sex with the girl on one occasion as well as kissing and texting her between October 2009 and March 2010. He was arrested in January after another teacher at the school informed authorities about his relationship with the girl.
The age of consent in New Jersey is sixteen (16) so you might be wondering why he was charged with essentially statutory rape in this case. However, there is a special provision for positions of authority such as teachers and coaches which makes the age of consent eighteen (18) in thos scenarios. Therefore, although it appears from the story that the student was a willing participant, she is unable to consent to the sexual relationship under the law because she was only 17.
Sexual assault (statutory rape) in New Jersey is governed by N.J.S.A. 2C:14-2 which provides in pertinent part:
§ 2C:14-2. Sexual Assault.
c. An actor is guilty of sexual assault if he commits an act of sexual penetration with another person under any one of the following circumstances:
(3) The victim is at least 16 but less than 18 years old and:
(b) The actor has supervisory or disciplinary power of any nature or in any capacity over the victim;
The defendant was facing five (5) to ten (10) years in state prison based on this second degree crime but his plea agreement with the State allows him to stay out of jail.