SALINAS, Calif. - UPDATE 7/13/2019 10:35 a.m. The Monterey County Sheriff's Office said a months-long investigation led to the arrest of John Anthony Fickas. He is charged with two counts of rape by use of drugs, two counts of rape of an unconscious person, one count of sodomy of an unconscious person and one count of sodomy by anesthesia or controlled substance.
Fickas is a political consultant for several local political campaigns. Local students could get community service hours for performing some campaign-related tasks. He also coaches girls field hockey and track and field at North Salinas High School. He is a walk-on, off-campus coach.
The Sheriff's Office investigated a case that happened in 2009 outside Salinas city limits, and Salinas police investigated a case that happened in 2015. The Sheriff's Office said the cases were very similar, and the victims did not know each other. They were also reported months apart.
Fickas was arrested at the courthouse in Salinas where he appeared for an unrelated matter. He was booked into the Monterey County Jail on an arrest warrant that covered the Sheriff's Office and Salinas police cases. His bail is set at $400,000. The Sheriff's Office said the Salinas Union High School District is cooperating with the investigation.
Fickas was scheduled to be in court Friday afternoon, but bailed out. His next court date is set for July 22.
Several coaches Fickas worked with were at the court on Friday. They told KION they were not surprised to hear the news and think their could be more victims.
One of the coaches said he filed a complaint against Fickas during the 2010-2011 school year after observing inappropriate behavior between Fickas and other athletes. Other students also reportedly told that coach Fickas would "party and drink" with them.
And while those coaches were not surprised, some former students did not see this coming. "I went to school with his son and just another school mate, nothing off setting or different about him and I’d never talked to john Fickas the dad himself. I always heard different things about him but at the end of the day everyone said he was a good coach,” said former student Gabriel Ramos.
If you have any information, you are asked to call Det. Sgt. Bryan Hoskins at 831-755-3773 or Det. Rosie Silva at 831-755-3818.
If you have experienced sexual assault, you have the right under California law to keep your identity confidential in police reports and court proceedings. For more information or assistance, you are asked to call the Monterey County Rape Crisis Center at 831-375-4357.
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According to the Monterey County Sheriff's Office inmate information, John Fickas was arrested and charged with rape of a drugged victim, rape of an unconscious victim, sodomy of an unconscious victim and sodomy of a drugged victim.
Fickas is a field hockey coach, but it is not clear how long he has been a coach.
The Salinas Union High School District confirms that he was a walk-on, off-campus coach at the school. In a statement, a district spokesperson said Fickas was placed on administrative leave and is not allowed to have contact with any of the students at the district. The spokesperson also said that the district will take appropriate disciplinary action, which may include firing Fickas.
"Certainly this is a disturbing set of allegations and as we learn more about the details we will address the matter consistent with the law and our policies. At the time it is an ongoing investigation, and we are cooperating with law enforcement officials. The safety of our students are a priority," the district said in the statement.