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Saturday, Jun 23, 2018
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Lake Region High girls basketball coach accused of molesting student

The girls basketball coach at Lake Region High School in Polk County was charged Thursday with lewd and lascivious molestation after deputies said he inappropriately touched a 15-year-old female student.

Deputies said Michael Cope, 52, who also serves as an in-school suspension para-instructor, touched the student against her will while they were alone in a classroom.

According to the arrest affidavit, the student and another classmate were in Cope’s classroom Aug. 30 to serve an in-school suspension.

According to the affidavit, the inappropriate touching occurred after the second student left to use the restroom, and again when Cope instructed that student to retrieve a stapler in another classroom.

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