ORANGE, California. (KABC) — A prominent Southern California track and field coach and former trainer at an Orange County sports and rehabilitation facility accused of sexually assaulting underage girls has been arrested, police say.
The Santa Ana Police Department says Chris Flores was arrested in Bakersfield during a traffic stop on Thursday.
Police said he was with two other people at the time of his arrest, although their identities have not been released.
According to an update issued by police, one of Flores’ victims is a 14-year-old girl from Riverside.
He allegedly met her through Sports Training and Rehabilitation Services, also known as STARS. Flores was a former coach there and the gym used the Santiago Middle School campus and field to train in Orange.
“This has happened over the course of a year, multiple times,” said Santa Ana PD Sgt. Maria Lopez.
Police said several of these attacks took place at the Calvary Chapel high school campus where some training sessions were held.
They said the attacks also happened across the city of Santa Ana.
“In Southern California, he certainly had access to minors,” Lopez said. “He was a coach, a coach, so that’s where we see our concern is that he did have access to other minors.”
In audio that allegedly captures Flores harassing one of his victims obtained by Eyewitness News, he is heard talking to the teenager over the phone, asking if she deleted texts they exchanged.
“Did you delete something?” the audio says.
After the teenager assures Flores that she did indeed delete texts, he asks her out on a date, but she turns him down.
“What the hell? We can never get cold and now you don’t want to go and you’re about to start school,” the audio says. “Then stop being an idiot.”
The recording continues, with Flores saying, “How about tonight after practice? You wanna go watch a movie?”
Another part of the audio, Flores says, “We talked about this guy, you have to stop with the denials.”
Police say the teenager later agreed to meet with Flores and they said she was not alone.
A 15-year-old from Irvine reported similar allegations against Flores to the Riverside County Sheriff’s Department.
“Whether she was an athlete or enrolled or what his relationship or relationship is to that female, that minor, I’m not sure,” Lopez said.
Meanwhile, Jason David, founder of STARS, spoke with Eyewitness News on Wednesday, and said he wants the public to know that these types of allegations will not be tolerated and that the safety and security of these children is their top priority .
“I’m sick to his stomach, I’m disgusted, I’m outraged,” David said in an Instagram post addressing the sexual misconduct allegations against Flores. “Please understand that I will stand with you guys through and through.”
David said that STARS has a zero-tolerance policy for sexual misconduct and they have severed all ties with Flores.
David, who is a father of five girls, said now that he can only stand with the alleged victims and their families.
“To the young ladies who are speaking out and who are thinking about speaking out, I commend you guys. You are brave. I stand with you and I just pray that justice is served.”
David also said that STARS immediately implemented new protocols to ensure that every child who is part of their program is safe and feels protected.
He wants anyone who feels they may have been a victim of this trainer to come forward.
“These poor little girls not only have to deal with this privately, but now publicly, but I want to encourage you guys to keep talking, keep sharing your story,” David said. “We will stand with you guys.”
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