Former O.C. youth basketball coach arrested on suspicion of unlawful sex with minors in 2009

by in News

A former youth basketball coach was arrested this week on suspicion of unlawful sex with minors a decade ago, authorities said Friday, April 12.

Carlos Juarez, 44, of Costa Mesa. (Photo Courtesy of Irvine Police Department)

Carlos Juarez, 44, of Costa Mesa, was arrested Thursday outside his home in the 1300 block of Adams Avenue, the Irvine Police Department said in a statement.

The arrest came after four victims reported sexual incidents, reported to have occurred in 2009, involving Juarez to various police departments, the statement said.

The victims were between 11- and 14-years old when the alleged incidents took place, police said. The victims did not know one another.

Juarez, who worked as a basketball coach for a club team, met the victims while they were all in elementary school, police said. Irvine detectives believe he groomed the victims before committing the crimes years after first coming in contact with them.

The Costa Mesa Police Department, Tustin Police Department and Orange County Sheriff’s Department are also involved in the cases, police said.

Juarez was arrested on a $100,000 warrant by Costa Mesa police and transferred to Orange County Jail, but jail records show he had since been released after posting bond.

Further details on the investigation were not immediately available.

“Investigators believe there are more victims in this case,” the Irvine police statement said. Anyone with information on the case was asked to contact Detective John Sanders at 949-724-7233 or jsanders@cityofirvine.org.

Besides his previous experience with a club team, Juarez has been a local high school coach.

Juarez coached the Costa Mesa High School girls basketball teams in 2016-17 and 2017-18, confirmed Mustangs coach Samantha Doucette, who recently completed her first season. She said she understood the school had concerns about Juarez’s coaching tactics, including cancelling games at the last moment and allegedly using derogatory language toward players.

Juarez also has coached girls basketball at Costa Mesa Middle School, Doucette said.

Doucette said midway through this past she heard from a club basketball parent that there were allegations of sexual assault against Juarez.

Earlier, Juarez coached at Tustin High School and reportedly at Mater Dei High School and Aliso Niguel High School.

Staff writer Dan Albano contributed to this story.