A swim coach at multiple Southern California high schools has been arrested and charged with sexual misconduct with a minor.
Steven Lawrence Ortiz is 58 years old, and had coached swimming and track over two decades at multiple high schools in the High Desert region at the south end of California, according to the VictorVille Daily Press. That report says Ortiz most recently coached cross country and track and field at Granite Hills High School. The school district says the alleged victim is not a Granite Hills student.
The Daily Press and others report that a 15-year-old boy went missing on April 24. Authorities say Ortiz found the boy and promised to take him to a homeless shelter, but instead, took him to Ortiz’s house and provided the boy with alcohol and engaging in sexual acts with him. The boy returned home the next day and said that Ortiz had picked him up.
The local ABC affiliate reports that Ortiz was arrested and charged with sexual intercourse with a minor and sodomy. Authorities also say they believe there could be more victims, based on Ortiz’s long career as a high school coach in the area.
Victor Valley News reports that the Apple Valley Unified School District released a statement terming Ortiz as a “walk-on” coach. Their full statement is below, courtesy of VVNG:
Apple Valley Unified School District is aware of last night’s arrest of a Granite Hills High School walk-on track and cross country coach. According to the Sheriff Investigator, the alleged victim is not a student at Granite Hills High School. We have no further information regarding this case.