A former Minneapolis soccer coach who admitted to sexually abusing a 13-year-old boy will serve no jail time, the Minneapolis Star-Tribune is reporting.
Rebecca L. Noonan, 33, had been the soccer coach at Champlin Park High School in suburban Minneapolis. However, she was relieved of her duties in July 2015, around the time that criminal allegations first surfaced against her.
Authorities say that in August or September of 2014, Noonan made contact with a 13-year-old boy, who was a friend of the family. While the boy’s parents were away, police say, Noonan, under the influence of drugs and/or alcohol, had sexual relations with the underage boy.
In January, Noonan entered a guilty plea where she essentially admitted to the criminal act.
“I was so drunk or so under the influence of drugs or medicine that I did not know what I was doing at the time of the crime.”
Still, her attorney, Scott Lewis, says that Noonan maintained her innocence, but took a plea deal to avoid a trial.
“It’s essentially an acquittal without the risk of a trial.”
In fact, her plea deal involves what’s known as a “stay of adjudication.” That means that, in ten years, her case will be dismissed and her record expunged if Noonan adheres to the conditions of her probation.
Those conditions include no contact with the boy or his family; no use of alcohol or illegal drugs; no possession of weapons; and completing treatment for “dependency, emotional needs, and personal needs.”
According to a June 2017 Fox News report, female teachers who have sexual contact with male students often get something of a “free pass” by the community, the media, and the courts, compared to similar crimes by their male counterparts.
While male teachers who commit sexual crimes against their female students are treated as predators, says Steve Albrecht, a Colorado-based threat assessment and school violence expert, female teachers who commit sex crimes against male students are often treated as simply “immature, confused, or even vulnerable.”
Similarly, while female students involved in sex crimes with male teachers are treated as victims, male victims are often viewed with a wink and a nod, as if they deserve to be congratulated.
That double standard plays out in how the perpetrators are sentenced, according to a review of such cases in New Jersey. While males convicted of sex crimes served, on average, 2.4 years behind bars, females served only 1.6 years on average.
[Featured Image by ivanmollov/Thinkstock]