Ex-Fairview High School football player guilty of attempted sexual assault

A former football player at Fairview High School was convicted Thursday of a misdemeanor in a sexual assault case.

The ex-student, whom The Denver Post is not identifying because he was charged in juvenile court, was accused of pinning a female student to a locker and putting his hand down her shorts during their freshman year at Fairview in 2016 and 2017.

He was charged in December 2020 with a single count of attempt to commit unlawful sexual contact, a misdemeanor, for that incident, and was also accused of sexually assaulting a student while the two were together in a friend’s basement during that same school year. The charges connected to the basement incident, which include four counts of felony sexual assault, are still pending and the ex-student is scheduled to stand trial on those charges in September.

Prosecutors with the Boulder County District Attorney’s office argued during the ex-student’s trial this week that the girl did not report the assault for years because she believed she would not be taken seriously by Fairview’s administration. Students have said the school has a culture that is tolerant of sexual violence, particularly by athletes.

The ex-football player’s defense attorney, Erik Fischer, argued that the locker-pinning incident never happened and that his client was falsely accused.

The ex-football player is at least the third student to publicly face allegations of sexual assault since 2019. The school’s quarterback, Aidan Atkinson, was charged with alleged assaults in 2019 and acquitted of the most serious charges in 2021. He pleaded guilty to two misdemeanor counts of harassment in connection with that case.

In a separate case, a former lacrosse player at the school was convicted in February of raping three students and sentenced to 90 days in jail followed by two years of probation. Two of those victims have filed a federal civil rights lawsuit against the Boulder Valley School District, alleging school officials knew the athlete was accused of sexual assault but did nothing to protect students at school.

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