Central coach charged in connection with juvenile sex case

Brandon Shields

Shenandoah County Sheriff’s Office patrol deputies issued a summons to a Central High School coach on Friday to appear in Shenandoah County Juvenile and Domestic Relations District Court.

Deputies charged Brandon Shields, 31, of Strasburg, with failure to report child abuse or neglect.

Lt. Chris Baker, of the Shenandoah County Sheriff’s Office, said that Shields’ charges are tied in with the case of Suzanna McCoy, 18, of Toms Brook, who was arrested June 7 and charged with two counts of engaging in consensual sexual intercourse with a child 15 years of age or older.

“(Shields) had knowledge of the relationship with Ms. McCoy and the 15-year-old victim and failed to report it,” Baker said.

According to the criminal complaint attached to Shields’ summons, McCoy confessed in a May 25 interview to having sex with the 15 year old twice between Dec. 1 and Dec. 30. The complaint also states that Shields admitted in an interview with Sgt. P.J. Ryman on May 27 that he knew about the December incident but didn’t notify proper authorities within a mandated 24-hour period.

Shields’ summons states that his charge is an unclassified misdemeanor. The criminal complaint states that he is a “mandatory reporter of incidents of this nature,” which Baker said relates to his status as a public school employee.

Shields was hired as the boys basketball coach in May 2013 and is listed on the Central High School website’s 2015-2016 faculty email list as an English teacher.

In a response to requests for comment, Shenandoah Public Schools Superintendent Jeremy Raley wrote in an emailed statement that he “cannot comment directly on specific personnel matters.”

“When we receive information related to student or staff misconduct, including information that suggests student safety and wellbeing may have been compromised or put in jeopardy, we are always committed to initiating a review and taking prompt interim and further action, as may be merited, in the best interests of our students,” he wrote.

Both McCoy and Shields are scheduled to appear in Shenandoah Juvenile and Domestic Relations District Court on Thursday morning.

Contact staff writer Rachel Mahoney at 540-465-5137 ext. 164, or rmahoney@nvdaily.com