A former Staples High School swim coach and math teacher who is accused of sexually assaulting two young girls multiple times over the course of three years pleaded not guilty to numerous sexual assault charges Tuesday, according to the State of Connecticut Judicial Branch website.
During his arraignment at Bridgeport Superior Court, Jeffrey Mark Schare, 43, of Fairfield, pleaded not guilty to two counts of first-degree sexual assault, two counts of criminal attempt to commit third-degree sexual assault, one count of third-degree sexual assault, one count of fourth-degree sexual assault, and one count of risk of injury to a minor, the website states.
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An investigation into claims that Schare assaulted two young Fairfield girls -- both of whom are currently under the age of 16 -- began in mid-November. According to Fairfield Police Department spokesperson Sgt. Sue Lussier, police were notified of the claims by one of the girls' school counselor. The counselor also notified the Department of Children and Families.
The counselor had been informed about the alleged incidents of sexual assault by a third party, who did not cooperate with police during the investigation, according to the report.
Shortly after police were notified, the parents of one of the victims agreed to an interview with police and gave a sworn written statement to the department, Lussier said. A forensic interview with the two girls was conducted in late November.
Fairfield police notified officials at Staples High School in Westport and were told that Schare had resigned from both his post as the coach of the Wreckers boys swim and dive team and his position as a math teacher at the school, Lussier said.
During the investigation, the suspect's attorney told police that his client would not make any statements to the department, Lussier said.
Schare is at liberty on a $150,000 bond. His case was continued until Feb. 8.