Lake County

High School Soccer Coach Accused of Assault to Appear in Court

A former assistant high school soccer coach accused of sexually assaulting three students was expected to appear in court Tuesday.

Cori Beard, 28, of the 300 block of Farmington Lane in Vernon Hills, was charged with 12 counts of criminal sexual assault and is being held in Lake County Jail on $1 million bond, Vernon Hills police said in a statement.

Beard was a part-time assistant soccer coach at Vernon Hills High School beginning in 2013, according to police, who said school administrators contacted authorities Thursday after learning “of possible criminal conduct involving a member of the Vernon Hills High School Staff and a student.”

“Investigators learned that Beard was involved in unlawful sexual acts with three current Vernon Hills High School boys,” police said.

Investigators determined the alleged sex acts occurred between December 2016 and February 2018 at Beard's home, police said.

The school districted activated its “Crisis Team” and will make counsellors available to students and staff, police said.

Anyone with information about the investigation is encouraged to contact the Vernon Hills Police Department at 847-247-4884.

“The safety and well-being of our students and staff is our top priority,” the district said. “And Community High School District 128 regrets the pain some individuals may be experiencing as a result of recent allegations made regarding the conduct of District 128 employee Cori Beard.”

The school board voted Monday night to terminate Beard's employment effective immediately.

The district encouraged students to come forward with any information they might have.

Investigators are arranging interviews with four new individuals, as well as inspecting phone and social media records, officials said.

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