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Coach charged with underage sex crime

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Posted at 6:28 PM, Nov 25, 2019
and last updated 2019-11-25 18:28:23-05

LANSING, Mich. — A former high school basketball coach is pleading not guilty to a charge of criminal sexual conduct with a child.

Jerrell C. Sanders, 30, of Blackman Township was arraigned Monday afternoon in a Jackson County courtroom.

Detectives with Michigan State Police's Jackson Post said the child is 15-years-old.

Sanders was a girls basketball coach at East Jackson High School when the alleged crime took place, but the school district said the victim was not one of his players.

Sanders was arrested on November 22, four days after the state police got a report that he was having a sexual relationship with a juvenile.

The school districts' Superintendent, Steve Doerr, sent out an email to parents and staff Monday saying that they suspended Sanders on the 19th once they found out that he was being investigated and have since terminated his contract.

Doerr said that the district is "shocked by the news" and has conducted an internal investigation even though the criminal allegations do not involve East Jackson students.

Sanders pleaded 'not guilty' at his arraignment.

He and his attorney had no comment.

If found guilty, Sanders' charge could land him up to 15 years in prison.

He's due back in court on December 6.

If you have any information on this case, call Det. Sgt. Jay Barkley at 517-780-4580 or email at barkley@michigan.gov.

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