A former Perry High School teacher, and Perry Aquatic Club coach, Eric Spaulding has been charged in Ohio with two counts of sexual battery, which are third-degree felonies, after being accused of having sex with an 18-year old student.
Despite the student’s age, Ohio law still makes the alleged relationship a crime if the “offender is a teacher, administrator, coach, or other person in authority employed by or serving in a school” and the sexual partner attends the same school.
According to police chief Mike Pomesky, the alleged incidents involving the student began in early April and did not occur on school property, according to cantonrep.com. Spaulding has since resigned from his teaching position.
Spaulding, who is 31, has been a coach with the Perry Aquatic Club since 2006 and the head coach since 2008. In 2012, he was also named the head coach of the high school boys’ and girls’ swim teams, and was named the Federal League Girls’ Swimming and Diving Coach of the Year last season.
Comments by the police chief did not indicate if the alleged victim was a member of the swim team or not. Spaulding is still listed as the head coach on the Perry Aquatic Club website. If the alleged victim was not a swimmer, Spaulding could still be banned by USA Swimming under Code of Conduct rule 304.3.6, which reads:
Conviction of, imposition of a deferred sentence for, or any plea of guilty or no contest at any time, past or present, or the existence of any pending charges, for (i) any felony, (ii) any offense involving use, possession, distribution or intent to distribute illegal drugs or substances, (iii) any crime involving sexual misconduct, or (iv) any criminal offense against a minor.
Any USA Swimming ban would have to undergo the proper process through USA Swimming’s policies and procedures, but the existence of charges, even without conviction, can be considered a violation.