Former North Kingstown High School basketball coach charged with child molestation and sexual assault

 Former North Kingstown High School basketball coach charged with child molestation and sexual assault

An indictment, information, or complaint is merely an allegation. A defendant is presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty.

PROVIDENCE, R.I. – Attorney General Peter F. Neronha and North Kingstown Chief of Police Patrick Flanagan today announced that a former basketball coach at North Kingstown High School has been charged with child molestation and sexual assault following a joint investigation by the North Kingstown Police Department and the Office of the Attorney General into allegations of sexual misconduct against students stemming from the administration of a “fat testing” program.

On July 21, 2022, Aaron Thomas (age 55, W2-2022-0180A) was charged by way of Criminal Information in Washington County Superior Court with one count of second degree child molestation and one count of second degree sexual assault.

The defendant is scheduled to be arraigned on August 19, 2022, in Washington County Superior Court.

As alleged in the Criminal Information, the defendant, while employed at North Kingstown High School as a teacher and basketball coach, engaged in sexual contact with two victims. Count One alleges sexual contact with a person under 14 years of age, in violation of R.I.G.L. § 11-37-8.4 (second degree child molestation). It is alleged that the defendant engaged in sexual contact with this victim between September 1, 2000, and February 22, 2002.

Count Two alleges that the defendant engaged in sexual contact with a second victim by force or coercion or while engaging in the medical treatment of the victim for the purpose of sexual arousal, gratification or stimulation, in violation of R.I.G.L. § 11-37-4 (second degree sexual assault). It is alleged that the defendant engaged in sexual contact with this victim between September 1, 2019, and February 22, 2020.

During the investigation, interviews were conducted with more than 30 former students who attended North Kingstown High School from the early 1990s through 2020, as well as teachers, coaches, administrators, and medical professionals.

Under Rhode Island law, the statute of limitations for second degree sexual assault is three years, however, there is no statute of limitations for second degree child molestation.

Detective Christopher Mulligan of the North Kingstown Police Department and Assistant Attorney General Timothy Healy and Special Assistant Attorney General Meagan Thomson of the Office of the Attorney General are leading the prosecution and investigation of the case.

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