The Union, May 22, 1998

Former soccer coach-youth pastor pleads innocent to molestation charge

Grass Valley/Nevada City, Cal.: A former youth pastor and Bear River High School soccer coach pleaded innocent Thursday to charges stemming from an alleged intimate relationship with a 16-year-old female student-athlete.

Appearing for the first time with an attorney - Greg Hodges of the Public Defender's Office - Dan Jimerfield, 42, entered a formal plea to the 28 criminal counts against him.

He is accused of engaging in an affair with a girl he coached on a school soccer team then recruited into a church youth group he headed.

According to court records, he maintained the relationship even after suspicions about the alleged affair surfaced and he had resigned from both the church and coaching positions.

Before charges were filed against him in April, Jimerfield made a confession to his alleged victim's mother that she recorded, according to court documents.

He told a Sheriff's Department investigator that his relationship with the girl developed when his marriage soured, according to the documents. He admitted to an investigator in a voluntary interview that the relationship with the girl crossed lines of emotional intimacy, but Jimerfield insisted at the time the bond was otherwise innocent.

Charges against him include unlawful oral copulation, unlawful penetration and child molesting. Jimerfield's next appearance is June 4 in Municipal Court when a preliminary hearing on the charges should be scheduled. He is out on $10,000 bail.

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