An Illinois woman says her high school basketball coach sexually abused her from 2009 to 2014 and that school officials were part of the coverup.
In a lawsuit reported by St. Louis’ KMOV, the woman said the abuse began in 2009 when she was an eighth grader at St. Clare Catholic School (O’Fallon, Ill.).
She alleges that coach Michael Giordano sent suggestive texts and photos and also claims that during her sophomore year, when she was attending another school, he raped her.
According to the suit obtained by the Belleville News-Democrat, the Giordano would isolate the girl in the locker room starting in the 2009-10 school year and hug her. He also started sending her sexually suggestive texts and explicit photos of himself.
According to KMOV, four school employees are named in the lawsuit for allegedly not reporting the abuse.
The Belleville Archdiocese released the following statement, per KMOV:
“This firm represents all defendants in the case, except Michael Giordano. The Catholic Diocese of Belleville has a policy of not commenting on pending litigation, and therefore cannot address the unproven allegations of Jane Doe’s complaint. We can say, however, that after careful investigation, we are firmly convinced that The Catholic Diocese of Belleville, St. Clare Grade School, and its teachers and principals acted properly and always with Ms. Doe’s best interests in mind. We look forward to defending our clients in court.”