Berlin, MD asked in Uncategorized for Maryland

Q: Can an adult coach reach out to my 13 year old child without my consent? This adult direct messaged my son on Instagram

My 13 y/o son doesn’t follow this man, the coach just reached out to him without our parental consent and he’s a convicted felon on top of it. Am I onntje position to file a legal complaint and suit against this person.

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1 Lawyer Answer
Mark Oakley
Mark Oakley
  • Rockville, MD
  • Licensed in Maryland

A: If he is the coach of your son's team, then there may be a reasonable explanation for the texts. If the contents of the texts are inappropriate, or unrelated to the team your son is on and appear to be an effort to "groom" or entice your son into a relationship outside of the team, then you should bring the matter up with the school or other employer of this coach and, depending on the nature of the texts themselves. potentially contact the police department regarding possible criminal charges. You do not describe, however, texts that are criminal in nature. Just because an adult texts a "hello" or carries on otherwise normal conversation does not make the contact a criminal act, but it certainly may be inappropriate conversation given the age difference and the authority the coach exercises over his players. You may direct the coach to cease communications with your son outside of team activities, or if you are concerned enough, remove your son from the team, and/or addrss your concerns to the employer of the coach. Be careful about making unsubstantiated allegations based on assumptions not supported by the texts, as you may expose yourself to potential defamation of character claims. Showing a transcript of the texts and stating you do not believe these communications to be appropriate coaching activities, is not defamatory, however.

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