Taylor Hooton Foundation > Hoot’s Corner > General > Ex-Sayreville high school football coach pleads not guilty to steroids
January 14, 2015
Ex-Sayreville high school football coach pleads not guilty to steroids
Somerville– Charlie Garcia — the former assistant football coach at Sayreville War Memorial High School who has been indicted on steroid charges, pleaded not guilty during his arraignment Friday morning and will be accepted into the pre-trial intervention program, his attorney told N.J. Advance Media. Garcia entered his plead before Somerset County Superior Court Judge Kimarie Rahill. He has been indicted on a third-degree charge of possession of a controlled dangerous substance. “We’re close to having this resolved,” Garcia’s attorney, Philip Nettl told Rahill. Afterwards, Nettl said that Garcia will be accepted into the pre-trial intervention program, a form of probation. Nettl said he and the Somerset County Prosecutor’s Office are finalizing the paperwork. Garcia’s next court date is Feb. 13. If Garcia successfully completes PTI, he will avoid any jail time. Defendants may be required to stay in the program from one to three years. Conditions such as random urine monitoring, are imposed on those accepted into PTI. Other conditions may include community service and submission to psychological and/or drug and alcohol evaluations with compliance to recommended treatment programs. If a defendant successfully completes all the conditions of PTI, then the original charges are dismissed. If not, a defendant is terminated from the program and the case is returned to court. Garcia, 38, of South Plainfield, was arrested during a traffic stop on Route 22 in Bridgewater and charged with possession of steroids and possession of paraphernalia after a police search of his pickup. They found two boxes each with 400 mg of steroids, as well as 14 individually sealed and capped syringes, authorities have said. He later resigned from his position at the school. “Absolutely not,” Nettl said when asked if Garcia sold or distributed any steroids to Sayreville High football players. “It had nothing to do with the kids. The school boardinvestigation proved that.” Documents provided to NJ Advance Media after a public-records request show school officials reacted quickly to his arrest. About 10 minutes after the Bridgewater police chief sent Sayreville Superintendent Richard Labbe a police report detailing the steroid allegations, Labbe sent an email ordering Garcia to be fired. Garcia’s name surfaced Oct. 2 after the much-anticipated Sayreville-South Brunswick football game was canceled hours before kickoff. But school officials said the cancellation was not related to Garica’s legal situation. Officials later announced an investigation into alleged hazing incidents, and the cancellation of the entire football season. In November, authorities charged seven Sayreville football players for their alleged roles in a string of sexual assault and hazing incidents investigators say occurred during a 10-day span in September. http://www.nj.com/somerset/index.ssf/2015/01/former_sayreville_football_coach_accepted_in_pre-trial_intervention.html