Travel softball coach accused of sexually abuse 15-year-old player

An assistant coach for the Lackawanna Lightning travel softball team in Pennsylvania has been charged with sexual abuse after police say he engaged in a relationship with a 15-year-old girl he’d been mentoring.

Charles Steven Kearney, 52, is facing various felony and misdemeanor charges after the girl told police she and the coach had been having sex since July.

The girl’s father had become suspicious of the relationship between the two since they spent so much time together, according to the affidavit obtained by the Scranton (Pa.) Times-Tribune. The father then found “disturbing” messages sent between the coach and his daughter and notified police.

When question by police, the affidavit states, Kearney became teary-eyed and asked to use the bathroom. He returned shaken and with tears in his eyes several minutes later. He was arraigned Monday and released on $25,000 bail.

The coach of the team, Wally Peck, told the Times-Tribune he was disturbed by the allegations.

“The conduct that he is alleged of committing did not occur during any team events or activities. This incident was not known to any member of our organization and only came to light when her parent found messages between the two,” Peck said. “At no time was Mr. Kearney alone with any player in our organization during team events or activities, nor did he have access to any personal information such as phone numbers, etc.”

Kearney is due back in court in June.

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