Deputies: Viera High School football coach sought sex with minor

Kevin Verpaele, 32, charged with solicitation of a minor

Published On: Nov 16 2012 02:22:47 PM EST   Updated On: Nov 17 2012 12:17:10 AM EST
VIERA, Fla. -

An assistant football coach at Viera High School was arrested on charges that he attempted to arrange a sexual encounter with a minor.

Kevin Verpaele, 32, was charged with solicitation of a minor following his arrest Wednesday afternoon on State Road A1A in Satellite Beach, records show. He posted $35,000 bond on Friday night, officials said.

School district officials held a town hall meeting Friday evening at the 2,200-student high school to discuss the incident with parents and guardians. School officials explained the charges and said there's a concern there could be more victims.
Deputies said Verpaele had personal knowledge that the victim was under 18 and over the course of a week sent several emails sexually explicit in nature, describing the sex acts he wanted to perform on the victim.

Local 6 has learned a student told school officials about the situation between Verpaele and the victim.

Brevard County School District officials learned of the investigation last week and immediately pulled Verpaele’s clearance to work as a coach, Local6 has confirmed.

"It's very scary that people are in our schools like this," said parent Melissa Barnes.

Like many parents, Barnes received a call from the school Friday afternoon.

“He was one of our community coaches. He is no longer allowed to coach for us any longer,” said Michelle Irwin, spokeswoman for the school district.

When reached at home, Verpaele's family had no comment.

Parents said they are even more concerned after hearing Verpaele is a father.

Parents like John Scoppettuolo said they plan to talk with their kids about what happened.
"We'll have a long talk when [my daughter] gets home tonight," said Scoppettuolo. "You definitely have got to talk to your kids individually. Everything starts with them."

Irwin said Verpaele earned a small stipend as part of his duties as a defensive coordinator. He had been working as an assistant coach for two years with Viera High School’s football program.

Verpaele played football at Merritt Island High School and the University of South Florida.

"We put our trust in our teachers and our coaches, to direct and guide our children and not take advantage of them and molest them, so it is very disheartening," said parent Nanette Sanger.

Watch Local 6 News for more on this story.