GEORGIA – A popular high school football coach is fighting to save his career and reputation amid allegations he sent nude photographs of himself to the mother of two of his players.
Martin Luther King Jr. High School’s head coach, Michael Carson, has been placed on administrative leave pending an investigation. The 51-year-old is accused of sexting a single mom of two boys, who claims she spurned his advances.
“There were some nude photos involved of the coach,” said DeKalb County Schools Spokesman, Jeff Dickerson, in an interview with Atlanta’s Fox 5 News. “My understanding is that they were shown to people who were around at the time, and many of them may include students.”
Parent, Davida Bishop, showed the unwanted sex-text to Carson’s wife, staff, and others during a football match at Panthersville Stadium in Georgia on Saturday night.
“Following that, the DeKalb police arrived on the scene and tried to gather as much information as possible,” Dickerson said in another interview with Atlanta’s WSB-TV.
“We want to talk to everyone involved. We want to question everyone involved. We want to get to the bottom of this story. It’s (being) taken very, very seriously,” he added.
The district has referred to the incident an ethics violation. It is unclear whether formal charges will follow for Carson or Bishop, who may have shown the photos to minors.
According to Dickerson, the coach has spent the last few of days at the central office cooperating with investigators.
DeKalb schools signed Carson up three years ago. He runs a highly-regarded program that is ranked third in the state in 5A. The Atlanta Falcons have even recognized Carson for his success on the field.
“It was important that he suspend his daily coaching activities while we investigate and collect all the facts in this case,” said Dickerson.
Carson is on paid leave pending the outcome of the investigation. He cannot have any contact with students.
Assistant Coach Robert Freeman is now the interim Head Coach of the Martin Luther King High School (MLK) Football team. Amid the controversy, the team’s practices have been closed to the public and to the media.
The MLK Lions are scheduled to open the 2012 season September 1 against Stockbridge.
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