Former Walhalla Teacher, Coach Pleads Guilty To Sex Crimes - WSPA.com

Former Walhalla Teacher, Coach Pleads Guilty To Sex Crimes

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A former Walhalla Middle School teacher and wrestling coach pled guilty to numerous sex crimes on Thursday. A former Walhalla Middle School teacher and wrestling coach pled guilty to numerous sex crimes on Thursday.
WALHALLA, SC -

A former Walhalla Middle School teacher and wrestling coach pled guilty to numerous sex crimes on Thursday.

Tenth Circuit Solicitor Chrissy Adams stated that Richard "Trey" Gardner III pled guilty to 16 counts of lewd act upon a child, 10 years of dissemination of obscenity, seven counts of second-degree criminal sexual conduct with a minor under 16 years of age, four counts of second-degree criminal sexual conduct with a minor between the ages of 11-14. Judge Alex Macaulay sentenced Gardner to 20 years in prison due to terms of the agreement.

"Trey Gardner is a sexual predator who used his position of authority to earn and then betray the trust of these two vulnerable young men who were in need of a friend, mentor, and father-figure at the time of his crimes," Adams said. "His actions are deplorable and these victims will spend a lifetime healing from the scars left behind by this man. Hopefully today's guilty plea will allow the victims to move forward and begin the healing process while also preventing Trey Gardner from preying upon any other young men ever again."

In the late 1990's thru the early 2000's Gardner was a teacher and coach at the school. Both of his victims were student-athletes at the time and he developed a friendship with the two boys, spending a large amount of time with each at school and his home. Once they began trusting him, Adams said that Gardner began molesting the boys when they were about 13 years old.

Several of the charges also stem from when he lived in Lancaster County.

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