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Modern interior of a locker changing room

The Seventh Judicial District Attorney’s Office has approved charges of criminal sexual contact of a minor against an 18-year old student following an October locker room incident. The Criminal Complaint filed in Magistrate Court by Sierra County Sheriff Investigator Robert Montoya describes the investigation process into the incident that triggered the cancellation of the 2021 HSHS tiger football season.

The charges filed against Jonithan Flores, 18, of Arrey, articulate that the victim’s mother had contacted head coach Daniel Terrazas about the incident, saying that her son was sad when he got home after practice, eventually telling her what had happened. The mother told Coach Terrazas that she did not want to press charges. Coach Terrazas told Investigator Montoya how he immediately followed the outlined procedures on how to handle such claims and contacted Vice Principal Russell Woolf.

The court records also indicate that the coach was surprised about the incident as he did not see anything happen in the locker room and that the athletes were supposed to have been out on the field to practice and not in the locker room without a coach. He added that he was upset because the team addressed inappropriate behavior everyday during practice.

After interviewing what appears to be every athlete on the teams’ roster it was learned that someone recorded the locker room incident and posted it in a private Snapchat group the kids had created. Immediately following the posting of the video, members of the team began leaving the group.

Many of the athletes interviewed said they did not see anything and had not been victim to any “cheeking.” Several of the students interviewed indicated they had only seen the video and one said he was in the background of the video but was not involved.

The other three suspects, minors, were interviewed without their parents. They described that the spur of the moment incident took place as a joke and articulated each other’s involvement in the locker room incident.

Flores, the only 18-year old involved, told police that his underwear were not down when he jokingly sat on the underclassman. He also said that the victim had put his shoulders up in an attempt to block contact.

Court records describe how they contacted a student’s parents to get permission to retrieve video that showed the incident that was not retrievable through Snapchat by the application’s design.

Flores now faces a single count of felony criminal sexual contact of a minor charge and will have his first appearance in Sierra County Magistrate Court on December 6 for an arraignment. The charges filed do not indicate what action was taken against the juvenile suspects in the case.

Following the incident school administrators announced the cancellation of the football season, which included two district games.

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