NORTH HIGHLANDS – A local high school basketball coach is behind bars after being accused of sexual assault by a former student.

Sacramento County Sheriff’s deputies arrested Stephen Calton, 32, the head boy’s basketball coach at Foothill High School on November 29 without incident at his Citrus Heights home. A former student, now an adult, reported the alleged assault back in June, related to an incident said to have happened “approximately two years ago” when the student was still a minor. A statement from the Sheriff’s Department does not identify whether the student was male or female.

Sheriff’s Department spokesperson Sgt. Shaun Hampton says the arrest follows an “extensive follow-up investigation.” Calton is charged with felony oral copulation with a person under 18 years of age. Calton was also booked for a violation of his probation status and due to the violation of probation, he is currently ineligible for bail. Calton is an alumni of Foothill High School and later played basketball at Sacramento State University.

Twin Rivers Unified School District spokesperson Zenobia Gerald said Calton was placed on administrative leave upon officials being informed of the allegations by the Sheriff’s Department. After questions arose regarding the District’s knowledge of Calton’s past arrest record, the District issued a statement saying that he had passed background checks prior to his initial employment in 2016.

“The District was made aware in (September) 2017 about an arrest from May 2016, which did not involve anything relative to the students or staff in Twin Rivers Unified. The District, as is our standard practice, consulted with our legal counsel, and took action as allowed and in accordance with state and federal laws and Board Policy,” Ms. Gerald said in the statement.

According to records, Calton was previously arrested for misdemeanor battery related to someone he was dating and felony burglary and in 2016, received five years probation.

Foothill High School Principal Heather King sent out a letter to parents this week, saying she was “deeply disturbed” by the allegations and will continue to cooperate fully with the investigation.

“All Twin Rivers employees are held to the highest ethical standards on a daily basis as the district does not tolerate inappropriate or unprofessional behavior of any kind,” Principal King said in the statement.

Calton’s name has been removed from the boy’s basketball page on the school’s website.

Sgt. Hampton is encouraging other potential victims to come forward and speak with detectives.
By Genoa Barrow
OBSERVER Senior Staff Writer