Archive for Friday, August 29, 2008

Coach charged with molesting teen girl

A former Lawrence gymnastics coach is arrested in Topeka - accused of molesting a teenage girl.

August 29, 2008


A former Lawrence gymnastics coach has been charged in Shawnee County District Court with molesting a teenage girl.

On Sunday, the girl reported she had been sexually assaulted at a business in the 3500 block of Southeast 21st Street in Topeka. David Byrd owns the Gym Zone located there, and signs on the door say the business is temporarily closed due to personal circumstances.

Byrd, 48, was booked into the Shawnee County Jail on Monday, and on Thursday, prosecutors charged him with criminal restraint and taking indecent liberties with a 14-year-old child. He is in jail on a $100,000 bond.


Munsoned 9 years, 9 months ago

No, they say they don't id the perps. They have before one occasion, not sure why because it happened in Lawrence.

Ragingbear 9 years, 9 months ago

Wow. That is quite a lot of Journalistic integrity there. State that it is LJW policy to not divulge the name of people charged in sex crimes, and then turn around and do it anyways. Here's to you, LJW! May this article get you a Pulitzer!

Haiku_Cuckoo 9 years, 9 months ago

I find it a bit unnerving that so many people here are defending a child molester.

Steve Jacob 9 years, 9 months ago

Happened outside the county, so it's okey I guess?

jaywalker 9 years, 9 months ago

Neither alleged perp nor alleged victim should be named or have their face splashed across the paper (and I hate the word 'alleged'). Absolutely pathetic LJW. The writing and headlines this morning have been high school grade at best, and now this. If this man ends up innocent you'd better make it front page. Only an allegation thus far, and yet his reputation is permanently sullied with this irresponsible piece. Who's running things over there?

daddax98 9 years, 9 months ago

"someone will surely say it is because of race: how sad"play the race card much? Disgusting

jaywalker 9 years, 9 months ago

"The Journal-World generally does not name suspects in sex crimes unless they are convicted."Niiiiiiiiiiice!!!!!!! Just went to story from 2 days ago about 'Baldwin man facing charges of indecent liberties with child' and the above was in body of article. No picture, no name, and that disclaimer. What? Was it ok to print it because it was on Topeka news? And the guy in Baldwin was apparently caught red-handed by the girls' mother (no pun intended), as far as this story goes it's mere allegation thus far. What the hell, LJW? Asleep at the wheel?

LA_Ex 9 years, 9 months ago

I like how the first line reads "A former Lawrence gymnastics coach has been charged ...." but the article doesn't mention anything further about his Lawrence connection. No mention of where or when he coached. Great job LJW.

jaywalker 9 years, 9 months ago

"I find it a bit unnerving that so many people here are defending a child molester"Innocent until proven guilty. Ever hear of it? God help us all if allegation alone is able to sway maroons like you to convict on the spot. Thanks Cuckoo. He's not a child molester until convicted, brain trust. How 'bout this, we can go back in time, I'll point at you and scream "Witch!", and we'll be dancing around your bonfire tonight. Brilliant.

lovethemjayhawks 9 years, 9 months ago

The Journal World only follows that rule when they want to. When you find someone in a position that is like this man they print their names no matter what county they are charged in. I remember a case where a local realtor was being charged and his name was all over the paper before he was convicted.

local_support 9 years, 9 months ago

Maria, I think people are looking for consistency. You can't refuse to name a sex offender in one case and then turn around and do it for another.

Take_a_letter_Maria 9 years, 9 months ago

I think this is a combination of things as far as identifying the alleged pervert.1 - His name was already made public by a different media source.2 - Even if his name hadn't been made public, you could easily find it based on the business being named.3- The fact that he worked with young kids on a regular basis provides some level of awareness to those parents who are entrusting their children with this person.The thing that I really get a kick out of is how upset many of you are that the JW identified the guy, yet there wasn't a big outcry when someone posted a link identifying the accused in the Baldwin incident.

Amy Bartle 9 years, 9 months ago

all you have to do is google him to find out he opened the GymZone in 1997. He previously coached the Topeka Skywalkers, and he was assistant to Lawrence High gymnastics in 1994. I found out all this by doing a google and then doing a search using his name within the Journal World. It will be interesting to see how this unfolds.

akt2 9 years, 9 months ago

If he is innocent then he won't end up being a registered offender. If he is guilty more girls may come forward. And if he is a pervert there will most likely be more victims. We might as well see who he is for future reference if he continues to spend so much time with adolescent girls.

newbaby24 9 years, 9 months ago

i have known david for years. He used to be my gymnastics coach years ago and very good one at that. Never in my life or time spent with david did i feel uncomfortable, honestly i felt as though he was trying very hard to not make me uncomfortable. At times i almost felt like he was standoffish, maybe because he knew that i was very outspoken. i don't doubt that the alleged victim may have felt uncomfortable around him. I am truly proud of this young girl for being brave enough to say something and stand up for herself. i am very interested in hearing the whole story though. The when and where of this make a big difference. David Byrd is a good man with a problem, there is no doubt about that. I would just like this case to be solved and in a fair way.

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