Stephen Witcher Permanently Banned By USA Swimming

Stephen Witcher, who has served as both a coach and a volunteer within USA Swimming, was added to the permanently banned list effective April 8th, 2016. Witcher was banned under section 304.3.7, which reads:

“Any sexual conduct, advance or other inappropriate sexually oriented behavior or action directed towards an athlete by (i) a coach member or other non-athlete member, or (ii) any other adult participating in any capacity whatsoever in the affairs or activities of USA Swimming (whether such adult is a member or not). Any nonconsensual physical sexual conduct, or pattern of unwelcome advances or other sexual harassment in connection with or incidental to a USA Swimming-related activity by any person participating in the affairs or activities of USA Swimming (whether such person is a member or not) directed toward any member or other person participating in the affairs or activities of USA Swimming.”

A cached version of Snake River Swimming, a USA Swimming club in Idaho, lists Witcher as the Technical Planning Chair for the club. The current version of the website has deleted Witcher and replaced him with “TBA”.

Witcher was the head coach of Cascade Swim Club in the Seattle Area from 1989-2005. Witcher also had a brief stint as interim coach of the North Whidbey Aquajets, as well Tiger Aquatic Club (TAC) in Idaho. Witcher is still listed as Head Coach of TAC per USA Swimming’s website, although it is unclear when that was last updated.

We were unable to find any more information about any incidents that might have led to this banning.

 

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H20 tater
5 years ago

Snake River Swimming is the LSC.

Bryan
5 years ago

Purely personal aside but if this is in fact true now a good half of my former coaches have been banned by USA swimming. Damn

Bob
5 years ago

This was something that happened 40 years ago. Too bad someone’s career got ruined by something that happens so long ago

MBMB
5 years ago

This ban never should have happened. It really is a travesty that someone’s career was ruined by hearsay, unproven hearsay, a falsehood to boot. Shame on you USA Swim. It was from over 40 years ago. And now an outstanding coach with impeccable credentials, character, dedication pays the price.

CRL
Reply to  MBMB
5 years ago

This claim wasn’t hearsay, and Coach Witcher confessed to the molestation verbally and in writing. He died on July 1, 2016, in Pocatello, Idaho. Here’s the notice of his death: http://www.legacy.com/obituaries/idahostatejournal/obituary.aspx?pid=180547526

MBMB
Reply to  CRL
5 years ago

no on the molestation. the claim could not be factually proven.

CRL
Reply to  MBMB
5 years ago

Remember him as the inspirational coach he was. Swim USA didn’t act impulsively; they investigated with caution and due diligence. He did confess, to more than one person, verbally and in writing. Here’s a legal definition of molestation: http://dictionary.law.com/Default.aspx?selected=1274 Note that it ranges over a variety of acts.

Joe
Reply to  CRL
4 years ago

He got punished for something that happens many many many years ago. He was also never prosecuted. Sounds like someone had a vendetta…

Cindy Wilson Romano
Reply to  CRL
3 years ago

CRL, Was good friends with all of you growing up in the swimming world. I really need to talk to you about the above. How do we get a hold of each other? I have already tried looking for you with no avail. This is really important to me. Please respond.

Admin
Reply to  Cindy Wilson Romano
3 years ago

CRL/Cindy – happy to connect you all via email, with your permission.

Cindy Wilson Romano
Reply to  Braden Keith
3 years ago

You have my permission to give her my email. Thank you!

Cheryl Lyda
Reply to  Braden Keith
3 years ago

Braden, you have my permission to give Cindy Wilson Romano my email address.

About Chris DeSantis

Chris DeSantis

Chris DeSantis is a swim coach, writer and swimming enthusiast. Chris does private consulting and coaching with teams and individuals. You can find him at www.facebook.com/cdswimcoach. Chris is a 2009 Graduate from the Masters of Applied Positive Psychology program at the University of Pennsylvania. He was the first professional athletic coach …

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