Ex-Calif. assistant football coach gets 36 years in prison for sexually abusing players

A former Calif. assistant football coach was sentenced Friday to more than 36 years in state prison for the sexual assault of five boys.

Jaime Jimenez, 48, was a volunteer assistant coach at Los Angeles’ Franklin High School.

As first reported by the Los Angeles Times, authorities said that Jimenez’s abuse of young football players at the school in the Highland Park section of Los Angeles went as far back as 2002 and that he actively pursued boys until his early-2015 arrest.

In November, Jimenez pleaded no contest to two felony counts each of continuous sexual abuse of a child under 14 years old and lewd acts on a child 14 to 15 years old, and to one misdemeanor count of sexual battery, per the Times. He was originally charged with 32 felony counts.

Jimenez’s five victims ranged from 13 to 16 years old. The Times reports that, at a preliminary hearing last year, several underage and adult witnesses testified that Jimenez gave them rides from practice, bought them gifts and often invited them to his house. They said they often slept over and were given alcohol by Jimenez. He allegedly moved from touching his victims to masturbation and sodomy. One person testified that the abuse began when he was 9 years old.

Vince Finaldi, the attorney for several victims who are suing the Los Angeles Unified School District, told the Times that school officials should have suspected inappropriate contact with one of his clients.

“Teachers and administrators would see him coming and going in (Jimenez’s) car, and they know that is against policy,” he said.