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CHICAGO (AP) — A lawsuit filed by two teenage students alleges a Chicago high school received complaints about alleged inappropriate behavior by a coach long before he was arrested earlier this year.

Former Roberto Clemente High School volleyball and swimming coach Casino Cruz is expected to stand trial Dec. 27 on misdemeanor charges after a 14-year-old girl said he inappropriately touched her.

Cruz was suspended after the January arrest, but the Chicago Sun-Times reports a civil lawsuit filed Monday claims officials could have acted earlier.

The lawsuit says complaints were made about Cruz years ago, including a 2003 arrest for touching a female student.

Cruz’s attorney Adam Altman says the allegations are false and the 2003 charges were dismissed.

School officials have said they’re cooperating with authorities and are prepared to pursue disciplinary measures “if the allegations are substantiated.”


Information from: Chicago Sun-Times,