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OTHELLO – Former Othello High School girls’ wrestling coach J.J. Martinez’s legal team is speaking out after it was made public that he had resigned from his positions with the Othello School District due to accusations of sexual misconduct involving a female wrestler. Martinez has resigned from his position as a wrestling coach and Paraeducator with the district in March of 2019. Martinez’s legal team at Johnson & Orr of Richland sent the following statement to iFIBER ONE News:

Mr. Martinez unequivocally denies any allegations that he had any kind of sexual contact or engaged in any sexual misconduct with a pupil of his. Mr. Martinez has had a long relationship with this student and her family. He has been her coach for years and has helped foster her talent for years. Mr. Martinez is disappointed and hurt that someone has mistaken his devotion to coaching as anything inappropriate. The fact that someone took his attention to his students as something malicious is a sad statement about the, perhaps well deserved, paranoia that has seeped into our collective consciousness.

Mr. Martinez does not know if it was jealousy, malice, or perhaps a simple misunderstanding that lead to these allegations being made. However, worse than the initial allegations is the treatment he received from his employer. Mr. Martinez was given an ultimatum by the school, resign or be terminated. This was after not only Mr. Martinez denied these allegations, but after the student in question denied these allegations and her own family stood by Mr. Martinez. Despite the support, Mr. Martinez decided out of necessity to resign.

While law enforcement states its investigation is “ongoing,” there is nothing further to investigate. Mr. Martinez himself, the student’s family, and the student in question have all completely denied that anything inappropriate has happened. Further, Mr. Hurst, the superintendent, admits in the article published on iFiberOne that they school was unable to prove anything. Finally, Mr. Martinez has passed a polygraph test, the results of which have already been shared with law enforcement. The idea that the investigation is “ongoing” is simply code for stalling. Mr. Martinez unequivocally denies any allegations that he had any kind of sexual contact or engaged in any sexual misconduct with a pupil of his. Mr. Martinez has had a long relationship with this student and her family. He has been her coach for years and has helped foster her talent for years. Mr. Martinez is disappointed and hurt that someone has mistaken his devotion to coaching as anything inappropriate. The fact that someone took his attention to his students as something malicious is a sad statement about the, perhaps well deserved, paranoia that has seeped into our collective consciousness.

Mr. Martinez does not know if it was jealousy, malice, or perhaps a simple misunderstanding that lead to these allegations being made. However, worse than the initial allegations is the treatment he received from his employer. Mr. Martinez was given an ultimatum by the school, resign or be terminated. This was after not only Mr. Martinez denied these allegations, but after the student in question denied these allegations and her own family stood by Mr. Martinez. Despite the support, Mr. Martinez decided out of necessity to resign.

While law enforcement states its investigation is “ongoing,” there is nothing further to investigate. Mr. Martinez himself, the student’s family, and the student in question have all completely y denied that anything inappropriate has happened. Further, Mr. Hurst, the superintendent, admits in the article published on iFiberOne that they school was unable to prove anything. Finally, Mr. Martinez has passed a polygraph test, the results of which have already been shared with law enforcement. The idea that the investigation is “ongoing” is simply code for stalling.

In March, Martinez submitted himself to a polygraph test, administered by mid-Columbia Polygraph. When questioned about sexual misconduct, Martinez denied the claims and received a score of +12 for his answers. Someone only needs to score a +5 for the results to be found “conclusively truthful”. The polygraph test concluded that Martinez was not being deceitful when answering “no” to acts of sexual misconduct.

During the polygraph examination, Martinez “acknowledged” kissing the student on the cheek on at least one occasion but denied ever kissing her in a "passionate manner."

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