UPDATE: Weston Gymnastics Coach Found Not Guilty of Sexual Assault

By: WSAW Staff Email
By: WSAW Staff Email

A jury has cleared the Weston gymnastics coach accused of sexual assaulting one of the teens he coached.

Taj Jefferson, 39, faced six counts of sexually assault a child, which is normally a misdemeanor charge if the child is over 16. However, since Jefferson works with children it is upgraded to a felony.

Prosecutors say Jefferson, a former gymnast and owner of Gymsport in Weston, had sex with a then 16-year-old girl six times in March of 2009.

During opening statements on Wednesday, prosecutor Theresa Wetzsteon talked of the girl's love for gymnastics and her trust in her coach.

"She will tell you that the two cuddled in the defendant's bed the defendant was rubbing (victim's name) back and the two had sexual intercourse," Wetzsteon said.

But Jefferson's defense attorney, James Connell, said the girl's story changed too many times to be believable and that Jefferson denies having sex with her.

"You will hear from persons who knew Taj Jefferson, who knew him then and know him now and know his character," Connell said. "They will tell you his reputation and character for truthfulness and honesty is excellent."

Jefferson's attorney had previously requested a motion to dismiss the case, however that motion was denied.

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