Lc Coach Accused By Ex-Pupils Teacher On Leave After Two Report Past Sexual Contact
The girls’ basketball coach at Lewis and Clark High School was put on administrative leave after two former students reported having sexual contact with him more than 15 years ago in another school district.
Richard Trudgeon of Spokane is under investigation by the superintendent of public instruction’s office as a result of a complaint filed on Oct. 30.
He is accused of having sexual relationships with two seniors at Liberty High School in Spangle between 1978 and 1980.
Trudgeon resigned from the Liberty schools in 1991 to take a job as a math teacher at LC, where he has coached the girls’ basketball team and the freshman football team ever since.
Spokane Superintendent Gary Livingston said Trudgeon will continue to receive pay while he is on leave. He earns $46,700 a year.
Livingston said no allegations have been made against Trudgeon regarding his employment with Spokane schools.
The superintendent of the Liberty schools was told of the allegations against Trudgeon on Sept. 27, public records show.
“The specific allegations are that Mr. Trudgeon engaged in a sexual relationship with a Liberty School District student while he was teaching at the school district in 1978-79,” according to a complaint from Liberty Superintendent Donn Livoni, who interviewed the former student.
Another student told Livoni that she and Trudgeon had a sexual relationship while she was a senior in 1979 and 1980.
The complaint was sent to the state’s Office of Professional Practices for schoolteachers on Oct. 30, and was made public by the office on Thursday. The names of the students were blacked out in the complaint.
Livoni declined to comment about the case when reached by telephone this week.
Trudgeon also declined comment when contacted at his South Hill home by telephone. He referred questions to his attorney, Carl Oreskovich, but he was not available for comment.
It is not clear why the allegations surfaced so many years later.
In his letter to the state, Livoni wrote, “Although I cannot reach a conclusion at this time as to the truth or falsity of the allegations, it is my opinion that it is appropriate to file this complaint with you so that you may also initiate an investigation and take such action as you deem appropriate regarding Mr. Trudgeon’s (teaching) certificate.”
The state issued a notice of complaint to Trudgeon on Nov. 3, and advised him an investigation is under way.
He faces possible revocation of his teaching certificate under the teacher code of professional conduct.