According to police, a Florida high school track coach was arrested for allegedly attempting to have sexual contact with a 16-year-old boy without disclosing that he was HIV-positive.
The Polk County Sheriff’s Office reported that Jarvis Young, 40, was arrested on Thursday and charged with sexual battery of a victim between 12 and 18 years of age by a custodial authority, lewd and lascivious acts by a 24-year-old or older on a victim between 16 and 17 years of age, abuse of a child without bodily harm, interfering with the custody of a minor, and being HIV-positive and engaging in sexual activity without informing the partner.
The investigation into Young began on August 28 after a 16-year-old Lakeland High School student told a school resource officer about alleged sexual contact initiated by the track coach.
The victim claimed that Young was giving him a massage when he removed the victim’s briefs and caressed his privates while attempting an oral sex act. The victim told investigators that he leapt to his feet and halted Young. Two days prior to the interview, the incident occurred in a school building where the two parties were present.
Sheriff Grady Judd of Polk County announced Young’s arrest, who had been arrested previously for inappropriate sexual behavior with juveniles but was never convicted.
“Jarvis Young is a predator; he likes children in a way that no adult should, and he used his position of authority to exploit a child for his own illicit sexual pleasure,” the sheriff said. “He must be incarcerated and never allowed unsupervised access to children again.”
Judd stated that Young was charged in Polk County in 2011 with conspiracy to commit sexual battery by a person in authority after he and another person were suspected of picking up two teenagers they supervised and driving them to Orlando, where they sexually beat the victims. The case was dismissed because the statute of limitations had run out.
In 2017, Judd continued, the Lakeland Police Department discovered from another juvenile that Young reportedly stroked his thigh and unzipped his pants before the kid left. According to police, no criminal charges were ever made in this case.
While the case was being investigated, the Polk County Sheriff’s Office determined Young had traveled to Alabama. When he returned, he was arrested.
Polk County Public Schools Superintendent Fred Heid commended the sheriff’s office for their inquiry and stated that the district will continue to cooperate.
“In the presence of school employees and coaches, our students and families should expect to be safe.” “The allegations leveled against Jarvis Young are deeply troubling,” Heid added. “Although he was never convicted of any previous incidents, I am deeply troubled that he was involved in any capacity with our school system.”
The superintendent went on to declare that the district will undertake a thorough inquiry into how the track coach was allowed to become a high school coach. Heid also stated that the district would begin conducting more frequent background checks as an added precaution, among other things.
“We will thoroughly investigate the circumstances that led to this individual working alongside students,” Heid stated. “I will do everything in my power to prevent this from happening again.”
Young is no longer a part of the district.
The sheriff’s office believes additional victims may have not yet come forward and encourages others to do so by contacting 863-298-6200.