According to WTHR Channel 13, a fourth student has come forward with sexual assault allegations against Kenneth Arnold, a former gymnastic coach at InterActive Academy located at 3795 US-421, Zionsville, IN 46077.
The 32-year-old gymnastic coach was arrested on August 27, 2021, after a fourth victim has stepped forward. The victim alleged that Arnold raped her three times at the facility by forcing her to perform sexual acts and holding her against her will. She also accused him of threatening her. She was able to come forward after going to therapy for the abuse.
Arnold was accused of sexual assault in 2016 by three of his students, all under 12 years of age. The fourth victim was also under 12 during the time of the abuse. All four girls claimed that Arnold abused them sexually at the InterActive Academy from 2014 to 2016.
Arnold had pleaded guilty to the former charges and was given only six and a half years of probation after his ten-year prison sentence was suspended. He is registered as a sex offender and is considered to be a sexually violent predator. Arnold is pleading not guilty, and his bond was set at $50,000.
Attorney Contributor Jeff Gibson, an experienced sexual assault lawyer, has represented numerous victims of sexual assault in civil lawsuits. During a recent interview, we asked Jeff to provide his knowledge of the rights of victims sexually assaulted by a gymnastics coach.
"Sports facilities and their administration have a legal duty to protect their students from harm, which includes sexual abuse. Unfortunately, we have seen coaches and teachers charged for taking advantage of their children. Too many instances of sexual abuse are taking place by these predators using their positions of trust and power. Sports facilities, like gymnastic gyms, and their administrators are obligated to provide adequate security measures. Some examples include conducting background checks and installing security cameras throughout the premises. If these facilities fail to provide adequate security, the organization could be considered liable in the event that sexual abuse occurs."
"Victim and their family may have reasonable grounds for a civil lawsuit if the sports facilities are found to be negligent. They have a right to inquire if the sports facility took reasonable steps to prevent the assault from taking place. Facilities can also be deemed liable if the crime was foreseeable. An example of a foreseeable crime includes if a report was made against a coach for misconduct, but it was ignored and allowed to happen again. The victim should seek the counsel of an experienced sexual abuse lawyer. If the victim's attorney can prove the sports facility is liable, the victim and their family may even receive compensation for damages."