CORONA: Volunteer HS basketball coach, suspected of unlawful sex acts with minors, released on bail
UPDATE: Wednesday, Oct. 6, 10:40 a.m.
CORONA — A Lake Elsinore resident and volunteer coach at two different Corona high schools was arrested Thursday, Nov. 30, following a four-month investigation into allegations of child annoyance and unlawful sex acts with minors. He was later released from custody after posting $90,000 bail.
The female victims interviewed in the investigation ranged from 15 to 17-years-old, Corona PD spokesman Detective Andy Bryant explained in a written press release after the investigation and arrest.
Detectives believe there are other possible victims who have not yet come forward or been identified and have requested additional information about the alleged suspect, identified as 41-year-old, Draper Mitchell.
According to officials, Corona PD investigated Mitchell in 2010, when a 15-year-old female reported similar allegations against him.
That case was eventually suspended due to a “lack of evidence,” said Bryant.
During their investigation, Corona PD detectives determined Mitchell may have met his victims while volunteering as a coach at Santiago and Eleanor Roosevelt High Schools and also as a part-owner of “Player’s Edge,” a basketball gym located in the City of Corona.
The investigation began in July, when a 17-year-old female reported that Mitchell had engaged in sexually explicit conversations with her while she was an employee of Player’s Edge.
The resulting investigation led detectives to identifying and interviewing another teenage female who was also a former Player’s Edge employee.
That victim reported to investigating officers that she quit working at Player’s Edge when she was 17-years-old, after Mitchell committed a sexual battery on her.
A third, minor female was then identified and interviewed and she disclosed to detectives that Mitchell had engaged in sex acts with her while they were in the City of Eastvale.
Based on their investigation, detectives arrested Mitchell at his Lake Elsinore residence. He was later booked into the Robert Presley Detention Center in Riverside on suspicion of committing lewd and lascivious acts with a minor, oral copulation with a minor, sexual penetration of a minor, and two counts of annoying or molesting children. All of Mitchell’s charges are felonies.
An online jail records search revealed Mitchell was released from custody the day after his arrest after posting bail. He is scheduled to be arraigned at the Riverside Hall Of Justice, Feb. 7.
Corona-Norco Unified School District officials later confirmed Mitchell is no longer a volunteer coach at any of their schools and did not return to his volunteer position this season.
“At this time, there are no known allegations of misconduct on school property,” said Bryant.
Anyone with information related to this investigation or who was victimized by Mitchell or knows someone who was victimized by him is encouraged to immediately contact Corona PD Detective John Garcia at (951) 739-4858 or via email.
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Trevor Montgomery, who recently moved from Riverside County to Shasta County, runs Riverside County News Source and Shasta County News Source. Additionally, he writes for Riverside County based newspapers Valley News, The Valley Chronicle and Anza Valley Outlook as well as Bonsall/Fallbrook Village News in San Diego County.
Trevor spent 10 years in the U.S. Army as an Orthopedic Specialist before joining the Riverside County Sheriff’s Department in 1998. He was medically retired after losing his leg, breaking his back and suffering both spinal cord and brain injuries in an off-duty accident.
During his time with the sheriff’s department, Trevor worked at several different stations, including Robert Presley Detention Center, Southwest Station in Temecula, Hemet/Valle Vista Station, Ben Clark Public Safety Training Center and Lake Elsinore Station, along with other locations.
Trevor’s assignments included Corrections, Patrol, DUI Enforcement, Boat and Personal Water-Craft based Lake Patrol, Off-Road Vehicle Enforcement, Problem Oriented Policing Team and Personnel/Background Investigations. He finished his career while working as a Sex Crimes and Child Abuse Investigator and was a court-designated expert in child abuse and child sex-related crimes.
Trevor has been married for more than 27 years and was a foster parent to more than 60 children over 13 years. He is now an adoptive parent and has 13 children and 14 grandchildren.