Los Angeles

Olympic Boxing Champ to Remain Jailed While Awaiting Arraignment

Gonzales has been behind bars since his arrest near his home Dec. 29.

A judge ordered 1984 Olympic boxing champion and youth boxing coach Paul Gonzales to remain jailed Thursday in lieu of $545,000 bail while he awaits arraignment next week on eight felony counts, including lewd acts with a 13-year-old girl.

Los Angeles Superior Court Judge Deborah S. Brazil ordered Gonzales, 53, to return to a downtown Los Angeles courtroom for arraignment Jan. 25 on four counts of lewd act upon a child and one count each of attempted lewd act upon a child, possession of child or youth pornography, distributing or showing pornography to a minor and contact with a minor for a sexual offense.

Gonzales has been behind bars since his arrest near his home Dec. 29.

The case stems from an investigation by the Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department, which was contacted by one of the girl's family members, according to sheriff's Lt. Todd Deeds.

Gonzales worked for the Los Angeles County Parks and Recreation Department as the head coach at the Eddie Heredia Boxing Club on East Olympic Boulevard in East Los Angeles for the past 10 years, Deeds told reporters earlier this month.

"He's probably better known for being a gold-medal winner for the United States in the 1984 Olympics in the sport of boxing,'' the lieutenant said, referring to Gonzales' Olympic victory as a light flyweight.

The girl met Gonzales at the boxing club last year, where she was a student, the lieutenant said.

"We believe that he befriended her and that he groomed her and we believe that lewd conduct was committed against her over a period of time,'' Deeds told reporters, declining to specify where the alleged crimes occurred.

The criminal complaint alleges that the lewd acts occurred on or between May 1 and Aug. 9 last year, and that the other crimes occurred on or between Aug. 1 and Dec. 29.

If convicted as charged, Gonzales faces up to 18 years and four months in state prison, according to the Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department.

Copyright CNS - City News Service
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