AP NEWS
Related topics

    Former gymnastics coach gets 65 years for abusing boys

    April 15, 2019

    GRETNA, La. (AP) — A former gymnastics coach who pleaded guilty on Monday to molesting 13 boys has been sentenced to 65 years in prison.

    Jonathan West, 27, of Kenner admitted offenses against boys ranging in age from 8 to 15 years old, the Jefferson Parish District Attorney’s Office said in a news release . Many of the victims were his one-time students.

    West pleaded guilty to all 24 charges against him in a bill of information. That included multiple counts of sexual battery of a child younger than 13; indecent behavior and computer solicitation.

    West worked as a gymnastics and cheerleading coach in the New Orleans suburbs of Metairie, Kenner and St. Charles Parish, where he still faces charges.

    Prosecutors said West molested some boys while driving them to the gyms and told victims his actions would make them better at gymnastics. The abuse started in 2015 and lasted until May 2018.

    Judge Stephen Enright ordered that West be electronically monitored and register as a sex offender should he ever be released from prison. Any of West’s electronics equipment that was used in the computer solicitation offense be seized and auctioned, he ruled.

    The judge heard impact statements from nine people, including six mothers of victims.