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Former Olympic Swim Coach Sued For Wrongful Termination, Ignoring Sexual Abuse

September 21, 2012

In this week's Orange County labor and employment lawyer news, that Howard Law's Vincent Howard has been following, swim coach Mark Schubert, who has served as U.S.A. Swimming National Team Director and head coach at Golden West swim club (GWSC), is being reportedly being sued for wrongful termination by a former employee.

The Orange County, California wrongful termination lawsuit reportedly claims that Dia Rianda, a coach hired by Schubert to help coach and operate Golden West, was fired after frequently alerting Schubert to the inappropriate behavior of William Jewell, GWSC assistant coach, who according to Rianda, touched and massaged young female swimmers inappropriately. Rianda claims that Schubert hired Jewell, even though he know that the Jewell, a former USC assistant coach, was under investigation by USA Swimming, the swimming sports' national governing body, for alleged sexual abuse charges.

According to Rianda's wrongful termination lawsuit, after presenting Schubert with repeated complaints of Jewell's alleged inappropriate behavior towards female swimmers from both the athletes and parents, Schubert turned a blind eye and made excuses for Jewell's behavior. During the days leading up to the U.S. Olympic Trials in June of last year, Rianda claims that Schubert continued to ignore any complaints that were raised against Jewell, and reportedly became so angry after finding out that she had reported the allegations to USA Swimming, that he fired Rianda on July 11, 2012.

Rianda's lawsuit also accuses Schubert of hiring a private investigator to take photos that could incriminate another U.S. National Team coach that Schubert believed was engaging in inappropriate behavior with swimmers--to use as leverage in a USA Swimming dispute. Schubert is also being accused of neglecting to report the sexual abuse of a young swimmer in 1988, by Rick Curl, another prominent swimming coach. Rianda claims that instead of protecting the young swimmer, and taking steps to report Curl, he took her off the team. Schubert also allegedly confessed to Rianda that he informed USA Swimming about Curl's behavior on different occasions but no formal action was ever taken, until the young swimmer, who is now in her 40's, came forward in 2012. Coach Rick Curl was reportedly banned for life by USA Swimming this week.

Rianda has reportedly been a swim coach for a long time in the Monterey area, and has generously donated to the USA Swimming Foundation. Schubert is known as one of the greatest swim coaches in U.S. history, having coached a roster of world record holders and Olympic champions.

In cities throughout Orange County, California and Southern California, contact Vincent Howard and our labor and employment attorneys today, at Howard Law, PC today.

Lawsuit: Olympic Swim Coach Ignored Sexual Abuse, Orange County Register, September 18, 2012

Schubert, Former Olympic Team Coach, Sued For Protecting Swim Coach From Sex Abuse Charges, Swim Swam, September 21, 2012

Related Web Resources:

California Department of Industrial Relations, (DIR)

Facts About Sexual Harassment, EEOC

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