Education A National Roundup

California Coach Wins Lawsuit Over Assault Accusation

By John Gehring — February 01, 2005 1 min read

A girls’ high school basketball coach in San Marino, Calif., who was arrested without probable cause for sexually assaulting a former student has been awarded $4 million in damages by a Los Angles County jury.

Patrick Gillan was accused of sexual assault by a 17-year-old former player in 2001. After he was arrested, the San Marino police department distributed his picture to the television, print, and radio media. But, citing insufficient evidence, the Los Angeles County district attorney’s office declined to file charges.

Mr. Gillan, who still coaches at San Marino High School, sued the city and the police department for injuries to his reputation. According to his lawyer, the jury also ruled on Jan. 20 that two police officers who worked on the case individually must pay Mr. Gillan $17,430 in damages.

Mr. Gillan did not return a call seeking comment. City officials have said they will consider appealing the ruling.

A version of this article appeared in the February 02, 2005 edition of Education Week