Ex-Sequim volunteer coach pleads guilty to communicating with minor for immoral purposes

By Joe Smillie
Peninsula Daily News

PORT ANGELES –– Jerry Jeff Pedersen, a former unpaid volunteer Sequim High School girls basketball coach, pleaded guilty Thursday to five counts of communicating with a minor for immoral purposes.

Pedersen, 29, was accused of having what police called a “boyfriend and girlfriend” relationship with a then-15-year-old player he coached last season.

Police cited several text messages of sexual nature.

Clallam County Superior Court Judge George L. Wood set a sentencing hearing for 9 a.m. Oct. 7.

Each charge carries a maximum sentence of five years in prison and fines of up to $10,000.

No prior convictions

Because Pedersen has no prior conviction for sexual offenses, the standard sentencing range would be one to three months in jail with 12 months in community custody and fines of up to $10,000.

Though Pedersen pleaded to five counts, the sentences would be served concurrently.

Pedersen's attorney, John Black of Port Angeles, requested a sentence of 60 days under house arrest.

Pedersen will have to register as a sex offender.

The state Department of Corrections will conduct a pre-sentencing investigation of Pedersen for Wood to consider during the sentencing hearing.

Pedersen initially pleaded not guilty to the charges in May after his April 1 arrest.

According to a police investigation that spanned March 1-23, Pedersen and the girl exchanged text messages and nude pictures over their cellphones daily.

A 2004 graduate of Sequim High School, Pedersen coached for the team as an unpaid volunteer assistant to head coach Evan Still.

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Sequim-Dungeness Valley Editor Joe Smillie can be reached at 360-681-2390, ext. 5052, or at jsmillie@peninsuladailynews.com.

Last modified: August 21. 2014 7:14PM
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