New Jersey wrestling coach John Denuto charged with sexually assaulting teenager

SAYREVILLE, N.J. -- A New Jersey middle school teacher who coached wrestling at multiple schools has been charged in the sexual assault of a teenager, officials said.

John Denuto, of Spotswood, was charged with sexual assault of a teenager, possession of child pornography, photographing a child in a sex act and child endangerment, according to the Middlesex County Prosecutor's Office.

John Denuto

Denuto exchanged phone numbers with a Sayreville Middle School student after eighth grade graduation in June 2016 and offered private wrestling lessons at his home, according to an affidavit of probable cause.

Union County College fired Denuto as the school's head wrestling coach after he was arrested on Saturday, reported. He has been suspended with pay from his position teaching special education math at Sayreville Middle School.

Before starting at the college this fall, Denuto was the head coach at Pennsville and Camden Catholic high schools, and held several assistant coaching positions.

Denuto was transferred from Sayreville War Memorial High School to the middle school in 2009 after several parents of wrestlers filed complaints of inappropriate behavior. Denuto was accused of using abusive coaching techniques and having inappropriate conversations with wrestlers about his sex life.

Middlesex County authorities investigated complaints, and no action was taken, according to a lawsuit Denuto filed against the school.

Denuto's lawyer, Edward Bilinkas, said his client denies the allegations and people should avoid jumping to conclusions.


Photo courtesy NJ Advance Media
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