Former Miles City Athletic Trainer Admits to Sexually Abusing Dozens of Students
Former Custer County District High School athletic trainer James “Doc” Jensen was sentenced to 12 years in prison on Tuesday, July 30 after pleading guilty to coercion and enticement charges related to the sexual abuse of dozens of students between the 1970s and 1990s.
Jensen had worked as an athletic trainer at the high school in Miles City during the 1970s, ’80s, and ’90s. According to prosecutors, he admitted to sexually abusing between 30 and 40 boys, but that there may be even more victims that will likely never come to light.
Prosecutors say that this abuse was committed under the guise of a fraudlent scheme called “The Program,” which Jensen claimed would improve their athletic performance.
The federal conviction is related to Jensen’s use of the internet to research methods of “The Program.” Additionally, a witness told investigators that Jensen had used a false identity to contact underage boys over the internet.
This conviction was made on the federal level, as the statute of limitations at the state level had already passed. He still faces child porn charges from the state.
Jensen’s crimes were first revealed after a civil lawsuit was filed against him and the Miles City Unified School District in 2018. That lawsuit had 32 plaintiffs, but both Jensen’s attorney and prosecutors say that there were many more victims.
Hi, I’m attorney Brian Kent.
If you or a loved one is a survivor of sexual abuse, I’d be happy to discuss your legal options.
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Legal Rights For Victims of Sexual Abuse by School Employees
Attorney contributor Brian Kent of AbuseGuardian.com is a former sex crimes prosecutor who now represents victims of sexual abuse in civil suits. We’ve asked Brian to share a few thoughts regarding the legal rights of those who have been sexually abused by school employees:
Our schools have a legal duty to do everything they can to protect their students. Sadly, education and other fields where adults work with children are often infiltrated by sexual predators who exploit their positions of trust and authority in order to commit heinous crimes against children. School administrators must be aware of the risk that these predators post to their students and do everything in their power to prevent sexual abuse.
When students come forward with allegations of sexual abuse involving a school employee, there are a few important points which must be addressed. The accused must be investigated and prosecuted, the students must receive the support they need, and the school should also be investigated to determine if they should be held liable for negligence. In cases involving negligence, survivors of school sex abuse may have grounds for a lawsuit against their abuser and the school.
For example, a school could be considered negligent if they had ignored previous complaints of sexual misconduct involving the abuser.
If you or a loved one has been is a survivor of sexual abuse by a school employee, you can learn more about your legal options by contacting one of our experienced sex abuse survivors lawyers.
Location of Custer County High School in Miles City, MT
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