South Bay High School Football Coach Arrested on Suspicion of Sexual Assault

A 41-year-old man who coaches football at a Gilroy high school was arrested in an alleged sexual assault on a girl at a county park earlier this week, a Santa Clara County sheriff's spokesman said Friday.

Danny Rodriguez, a Hollister resident who works at Christopher High School, was arrested on suspicion of contact with a minor with intent to commit sexual acts, sexual battery and annoying and molesting a minor, sheriff's Sgt. James Jensen said.

Around 8:30 p.m. Sunday, deputies were informed of a sexual assault that had occurred on Coyote Reservoir Road at Coyote Lake Harvey Bear Ranch Park, east of Gilroy, Jensen said. Rodriguez allegedly touched the girl in a sexual way multiple times, according to Jensen.

Rodriguez met the girl while he lived with her family, not at the school where he was a teacher's aide and football coach, Jensen said. He was booked into county jail Wednesday and is being held in lieu of $65,000 bail, according to jail records.

Rodriguez was placed on leave from the high school pending the outcome of the investigation, Gilroy Unified School District officials said. He underwent a criminal background check including fingerprint clearance from the Department of Justice and FBI when he was hired, according to district officials.

"I want to reassure the community that the safety of our students is our highest priority," district Superintendent Deborah Flores said in a statement Friday.

"These serious allegations are extremely disturbing and we will continue to work cooperatively with the County Sheriff's Office to continue to ensure the safest learning environment for all students," Flores said.

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