Former Roosevelt Coach’s Sexual Exploitation Trial Delayed

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DES MOINES, Iowa -- The trial of a metro teacher accused of sexually assaulting a former student has been delayed.

The trial was originally scheduled to begin Monday morning, but jury selection will now begin Tuesday afternoon. The only reason given for the delay was there are legal matters that need to be dealt with.

Gerald Johnson worked as a special education teacher and coach of the girls' basketball team at Roosevelt High School.

In December, a 16-year-old girl came forward saying he assaulted her. The girl, who was a student of his just one year before, told police Johnson took her out of class and brought her to his classroom.

She claims he told her he wanted to have sex with her. He also kissed and groped her.

Students describe Johnson as a popular teacher and coach, and victim advocates say that makes for an ever tougher time for the victim to come forward.

They say coming forward with an allegation against a well-liked person is hard for the victim.

Johnson is charged with sexual exploitation by a school employee and assault with intent to commit sexual abuse.

Johnson's jury trial will now begin Tuesday at 3:30 p.m. in Polk County court.

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