Mercy High Track and Soccer Coach Charged with Sexual Abuse of Student
A former Mercy High School track and soccer coach has been arrested and charged with sexually abusing a student at the all-girls Catholic school. 30-year-old Ernest Jackson has been charged with four sex offense counts and is currently being held without bond, according to court records. Jackson is a former part-time coach for the Mercy indoor track, outdoor track, and soccer teams.
Shortly before Thanksgiving this year, school officials were notified “that a part-time coach had engaged in the sexual abuse of a student.” The school contacted authorities and Jackson was criminally charged on Friday, November 30.
According to online records, the sexual offenses occurred between August 1, 2015, and November 29, 2018.
Legal Recourse For Survivors of School Sexual Abuse
Attorney contributor Brian Kent of AbuseGuardian.com has a background as a sex crimes prosecutor and now represents sexual assault survivors in civil lawsuits. We’ve asked Brian to add some thoughts on the options for legal recourse available to survivors of sexual abuse by school employees:
Educators and coaches are highly trusted and valuable members of our communities. While most of these individuals have earned this trust and are honorable people, a small minority are sexual predators who use their positions of authority and trust as a way to commit heinous crimes of sexual abuse.
When students are sexually abused by school employees, we must make sure that the victims get the support they need, that the perpetrator is prosecuted, and that the school is held accountable if their negligence enabled the abuse to occur. For example, a school could be considered negligent for failing to run a background check before hiring a new employee with a history of sexual misconduct. In cases involving negligence, the victims and their families may have grounds to file a lawsuit.
If you or someone you love has been sexually abused by a teacher, coach, or another school employee, you can learn more about your legal options by speaking to an experienced sexual abuse survivors lawyer.