Softball coach accused of having sexual relationship with 14-year-old
ST. JOSEPH COUNTY, Ind., --- A youth softball coach is facing multiple felony charges, accused of molesting one of his 14-year-old players and court documents allege they had a sexual relationship for months.
Michael Feltz, a coach for the 14U OC Crush Softball Team was arrested and is now facing several charges including child molestation, sexual misconduct, child exploitation. and more.
According to court documents the 45-year-old was allegedly having a relationship with the teen victim for six months starting when she was just 13-years old.
Court documents stated the victim said they would meet up near Target in South Bend to have sex and exchange inappropriate photos.
Something child abuse prevention experts have encouraged parents to be vigilant about.
“It’s really important for communities and parents in particular to be prepared on how to have conversations with your kids, how to engage in that conversation. We know that 80% of abuse happens in one-on-one isolated situations,” said Maggie Owens the Director of Education and Community Relations at Indiana’s Center of Prevention of Youth Abuse & Suicide. “So, ask questions, ask who’s going to be around.”
Court documents said the victim’s mother asked her to stop contacting Feltz, but the messages continued.
Detectives said the victim contacted Feltz after her mother found out about the alleged relationship late last month, where one of the messages found from the victim said,
“Please don’t freak out and stay calm. I love you.”
This kind of communication is something Owens said can reveal signs of abuse.
“You may see behavioral changes. You may see a person become withdrawn or suddenly have large personality changes. Maybe they’re changing the group of friends that they are with. They don’t want to be around a person anymore. Those kinds of things can just be indicators that a conversation can be had.”
ABC57 did reach out to the OC Crush Softball organization and they declined comment.
We also reached out to several parents affiliated with the organization and other coaches in the league but we have not heard back yet.
Feltz is set to appear in court on April 21 for his initial hearing.
If you want more information about child abuse prevention click here.