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Kim Martinez coached volleyball while a former coach who faces child porn charges was on staff.
Monday, May 6, 2013
Salem High School coach and teacher Kim Martinez has resigned as the school’s volleyball coach, a school system spokesman said.
Martinez, who was most recently Salem’s varsity volleyball coach, was a coach for the school’s volleyball teams while former volunteer coach Dewayne Thomas Barger, who now faces child pornography charges, worked with the teams.
Salem spokesman Mike Stevens said in an email that Martinez submitted her letter of resignation to the school’s principal Friday. Stevens said she met with players and informed them Monday morning.
It was unclear Monday whether Martinez was asked to resign. Stevens said she resigned her position effective immediately and that coaches are on annual contracts and traditionally not appointed for the next school year until June. He did not provide additional information.
Martinez is currently a Spanish teacher at the high school and has been since 2010. She was hired by the school system in 1999 and first taught at Andrew Lewis Middle School.
Barger, 37, was charged with four counts of possession of child pornography and four counts of producing child pornography in March. He is accused of secretly recording videos of underage girls changing clothes and bathing in his apartment. Investigators continue to examine the contents of several electronic devices seized from Barger’s apartment to identify any victims and locations, said Salem Police Chief Jeff Dudley.
Barger was a volunteer assistant coach for Salem High School’s volleyball teams between 2006 and 2011. He has also been accused by a former Salem player of inappropriately texting her while he was her coach.
Madeline Aliff, a 2009 Salem High School graduate, told The Roanoke Times in March that Barger lavished attention, including unwanted gifts, frequent text messages and invitations to dinner, upon her in 2007 when she was a junior varsity volleyball player.
Aliff said she always refused dinner with him except for one occasion when she went with him and Martinez.
She said Martinez invited her to discuss volleyball, though little volleyball was discussed that evening. Aliff recounted that Martinez picked her up and drove her to Christiansburg, along with Martinez’s small child, and said she was surprising Barger.
Aliff said Martinez brought Barger on as a volunteer coach at Salem and that Martinez consistently told her she was Barger’s favorite.
Later after Barger showed up at Aliff’s house unannounced with gifts, Aliff said she and her parents then met with school administrators to discuss the issue. After the meeting, Aliff said, word spread that Barger would not be back as a volunteer coach.
Aliff said Barger was not a member of the volleyball staff for the 2008-09 season, but Salem officials have said Barger worked with the team continuously from 2006 through 2011.
An administrative review was conducted at the high school after Barger’s arrest. The review was completed by Curtis Hicks, Salem’s director of secondary education.
Superintendent Alan Seibert has said the review is largely a personnel matter and has said only that the school system plans to craft a policy regulating text message communication and improve coaching training.
Staff writer Matt Chittum contributed to this report.
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