According to WTOP News, a Falls Church tennis coach was arrested for having an inappropriate sexual relationship with a student.
Rafael “Rally” Diokno was a seasonal contract employee with Falls Church City Public Schools. Diokno faces accusations of having an inappropriate relationship with a student from George Mason High School. The abuse allegedly began in May and occurred at various locations throughout Fairfax County.
Diokno faces three felony charges of taking indecent liberties of a child, reported WTOP news. He is being held without bond at the county’s detention center.
Attorney contributor Kevin Biniazan is an experienced sexual assault attorney who represents victims of sexual abuse by school employees in civil lawsuits. Below, Kevin provides commentary on coach sexual assault cases to assist victims in learning their legal rights.
“Schools have a legal obligation to uphold the safety of students enrolled in their schools. Sadly, across the country, there have been numerous cases of coach sexual assault. Schools must do everything in their power to prevent the hiring of predators and ensure the safety of their students. Implementing safeguards for student protection is an important action for schools. Examples of safeguards include easy reporting systems and staff reporters, but there are more. If a school fails to implement safeguards, it may be deemed liable.”
“Victims and their families should secure an experienced sexual assault attorney’s services to explore all their legal rights. If a school does not do everything possible to prevent abuse, it may be considered liable in cases of sexual abuse by a coach. A school could be deemed liable as a result of negligence. An example of negligence is if other staff were aware of the abuse but did not report it. In negligence cases, victims and their families should know they may have grounds for a lawsuit against the school, not only the coach.”