Washington police were not notified of a 2014 incident at Kids in Motion that led to one of three felony child molestation charges against a gymnastics coach.
David F. Schneider, 41, Washington, was charged Tuesday, Feb. 6, in Franklin County Associate Circuit Court with three felony counts of child molestation. The charges stem only from incidents at Kids in Motion.
According to a probable cause statement filed in the Franklin County Prosecutor’s office by Washington police, Schneider touched three juveniles under the shorts while helping them do the oversplits.
Schneider was a coach at Kids in Motion from the fall of 2011 until the fall of 2014.
Three separate juveniles reported inappropriate touching. One victim told her mother about inappropriate touching in 2014. The mother then informed the owner of Kids in Motion, Piper Hoemann.
Schneider’s time at Kids in Motion ended at around the same time Hoemann was informed of the touching by the victim’s mother.
Washington police said Hoemann did not report the touching allegations.
According to Missouri State Statue RSMo 210.115.1, certain classes of people are “mandatory responders” and required to report any abuse or neglect of children under the age of 18.
The statute says any “person with responsibility for the care of children” is required to report.
Hoemann could not be reached for comment, but released a statement on the Kids in Motion website Wednesday. The statement was removed by Thursday morning.
The statement called the news “shocking” and expressed “deep sorrow” for the gymnasts.
Hoemann also outlined current, as well as new safety procedures in place at the gym. She said no coach is ever allowed to be alone with a gymnast. Hugging also is prohibited and no men will be allowed to coach.
Other Coaching Jobs
Schneider also was employed as a volunteer coach at the Four Rivers Area Family YMCA, Crosspoint Christian School and with various swim teams.
He had been with the Four Rivers YMCA for at least 10 years as a swim program coach. He was let go by the YMCA after charges were filed.
The Y released the following statement to The Missourian after the charges were made public:
“Mr. Schneider was a volunteer at the Four Rivers Y. While the allegations against him took place at a local gymnastics center, we have never received any allegations about him. Regardless, we immediately prohibited him access to Y premises when we learned of the allegations.
“The safety and well-being of the children and participants involved in our programs and services is always our top priority. We have a series of measures in place for all volunteers and staff prior to working in our facilities to keep kids safe.
“The Y is deeply shocked and concerned by this news and our thoughts and prayers go out to the children and families involved.”
Washington police said their initial investigation into Schneider did not involve any allegations of wrongdoing at the YMCA.
Like the YMCA, Crosspoint Christian School officials expressed shock over the charges.
School administrator Don Coons, who took the helm at the school this year, said he did not know Schneider, but confirmed he had been a coach at the school.
Coons said according to yearbooks, Schneider coached volleyball from 2003 to 2011 and soccer from 2003 to 2005.
Coons said he was unaware of any accusations made against Schneider while he was affiliated with Crosspoint.
“The safety of our students is first and foremost our concern,” he said. “We try to do all we can to make sure our students are safe. We have policy in place to do background checks on any adults involved with students.”
Schneider also reportedly volunteered as a coach in Union. Union City Administrator Russell Rost said he worked one summer, 2008, at the Swimplex as a lifeguard. He also was a coach on a summer team.
Union Police Chief Norman Brune said his department has not handled any reports of wrongdoing by Schneider at this time.
Additional reporting by Karen Butterfield.