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Jun-09-2007 13:11TweetFollow @OregonNews
Swimming Coach Cleared on Sex Abuse Charges in Lake OswegoSalem-News.com
A jury found swim coach Don King not guilty of sexual abuse of girls on his Lake Oswego High School team.
(LAKE OSWEGO, Ore.) - The owner of King Swimming of Lake Oswego who was arrested on numerous charges relating to sex abuse has been cleared by a jury in Linn County. The business owned by 65-year old Donald John King coaches young swimmers.
Lake Oswego Police say the investigation began in Albany when people contacted an off-duty Albany Police detective at a swim meet over concerns related to Mr. King's alleged touching of children. Albany Police arrested King and charged him with 2 counts of first-degree sex abuse, two counts of first-degree attempted sexual abuse and 4 counts of third-degree sexual abuse.
During the trial a videotape was shown of King having contact with girls that a detective called "disturbing."
KGW reports that King he maintained that any touching lacked sexual intent and was brief and inadvertent. They also quote his defense attorney, Rich Cohen, say that King's contact with the girls -- some as young as 13 -- was "grandfatherly affection."
All six counts against Mr. King were dropped when the Linn County jury returned their not guilty verdicts Thursday.
George Eder, a deputy district attorney in Linn County, reportedly said, "The evidence was squarely presented to the jury."
"The jury took the time to think hard about it and consider it carefully, and in the end it's the jury's decision to make."
Charges related to sex abuse in Clackamas County are still pending. ----------------------------------------------------------
Special thanks to KGW for information in this report
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