POLK COUNTY, Fla. – Polk County Sheriff Grady Judd discussed details regarding the arrest of a Lakeland High School track coach who has been arrested for sexually battering a 16-year-old boy.
Judd said the suspect, Jarvis Young, admitted to deputies that he was HIV positive.
According to Judd, rumors among student athletes were that Young was known to give students gifts, such as gym equipment, but would warn each other not get too close and let the coach touch them.
The investigation began on August 28th, after the victim, a student at Lakeland High School, told the School Resource Deputy about sexual contact initiated by Young. The victim elaborated in an interview that Young was giving the victim a massage, moved the victim’s shorts and touched the victim’s penis with his hand and then his lips while attempting to perform oral sex on the victim. The victim said he jumped up and stopped Young.
According to the victim, the incident occurred two days prior while the two were in a school building.
“Jarvis Young is a predator—he likes children in a way that no adult should, and he used his position of authority to take advantage of a child for his own illicit sexual gratification. He needs to be locked-up and never be allowed unsupervised near children again.,” said Polk County Sheriff Grady Judd.
In 2011, the Polk County Sheriff’s Office charged Young with conspiracy to commit sexual battery by a person in authority after he and a co-conspirator were accused of picking up two juveniles they were mentoring, and drove them to Orlando where the victims were sexually battered. The case was later No-Billed by the State Attorney’s Office due to the statute of limitations.
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In 2017, another juvenile reported to the Lakeland Police Department that Young had touched his thigh and unzipped his pants before the juvenile ran away. There were no criminal charges in that case.
PCSO detectives learned that Young had travelled to Alabama while the case was being investigated, and upon his return he was arrested.
Polk County School District said that Jarvis was a volunteer coach since December of 2020 and was paid a stipend.
In a statement Friday Polk Public School School Superintendent Frederick Heid said, “I appreciate the work of the Polk County Sheriff’s Office to investigate this matter, and take the necessary steps to protect students from further harm,” the statement read. “Our students and families should expect to be safe in the presence of school employees and coaches. The allegations against Jarvis Young are deeply disturbing. Although he was never convicted of any past incidents, I am extremely troubled that he was involved with our school system in any capacity.”
“PCPS will be conducting a thorough investigation into how Young was allowed to become a coach for Lakeland High,” the statement from the school district said. “We also will be pulling a list and re-screening coaches who work with PCPS students, as well as other individuals who work with students in extracurricular programs. Furthermore, we intend to increase the frequency of our background checks and add extra measures to evaluate any past reports of inappropriate behavior.”
Detectives believe there is a possibility that there are additional victims of Jarvis Young who have not yet come forward, and urge them to contact the Polk County Sheriff’s Office at 863-298-6200.
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