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Palm Beach Post (Florida)

 

A former Boca Raton High School swim coach is facing a battery charge for allegedly inappropriately touching a teenage student, court documents show.

Eric Hill, 42, pleaded not guilty to the misdemeanor charge Sept. 27. His next court date is set for Jan. 10, when he is scheduled to attend a plea conference hearing.

Hill was removed from his coaching and teaching positions after schools police opened an investigation in May. Dennis Rudman, Hill's attorney, could not be reached for comment.

The unidentified student told school police that she was "grabbed" on the backside by Hill on Feb. 14. The girl was 16 at the time of the incident and told police that Hill had been her coach since 2015.

The girl said Hill seemed "normal" until earlier this year when "his jokes have been more flirtatious," according to the report.

"I can't wait till you're 18," Hill allegedly told the girl.

Hill twice touched her backside, including once when she was walking out of class, she told police. In another incident, Hill allegedly rested his arm on the girl's chest.

Witnesses told police that Hill regularly made inappropriate comments about the victim and told members of the boys' swim team that she was "off-limits."

Another witness told police she saw Hill touch the victim on Feb. 14 while they were inside Hill's office.

Records show that schools police investigated Hill at least twice previously for inappropriate touching.

In March 2011, Hill was accused by a ninth-grade student of running his hand down her body as she walked out of the school's cafeteria. Hill was an assistant principal at the time, records show.

In December 2017, a student told investigators that Hill touched her chest inappropriately after she changed out of her swimsuit. The girl also said Hill made suggestive comments to her, according to a school police report.

The results of those two investigations were not available in documents provided to The Palm Beach Post.

Hill won three state titles with Boca Raton (two for girls swimming and one for boys) and was named Florida High School Athletic Association Coach of the Year three times, per the school athletics website. Hill won three state titles with Boca Raton (two for girls swimming and one for boys) and was named Florida High School Athletic Association Coach of the Year three times, per the school athletics website. The Palm Beach Post named him its boys All-Area coach of the year in 2016 and its girls All-Area coach in 2011, 2013 and 2014.

Hill coached swimming at Boca High for 15 years and was a math teacher. He had worked for the School District since 2003.

jmilian@pbpost.com

@caneswatch

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December 13, 2018
 
 
 

 

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