by Irvin Muchnick
Sarah Ehekircher, the native Coloradan swimmer and coach whose story of grooming and abuse by her age-group coach Scott MacFarland — with vivid connections to some of America’s most celebrated swim coaching trees — is finally getting her day in court.
On Tuesday, lawyers for Ehekircher filed in Orange County Superior Court in California a complaint for damages against USA Swimming, MacFarland, and the Mission Viejo Swim Club. The complaint alleges sexual abuse of a minor, negligence, and intentional infliction of emotional distress.
The agonizing tale of MacFarland’s abuse of Ehekircher, and of her failed efforts to get a fair hearing by either USA Swimming or the U.S. Center for Safe Sport, has been told at Concussion Inc. in dozens of articles across more than two years. At the bottom here are links to our historical coverage. After we began this reporting, MacFarland “retired” from his most recent coaching position in Texas.
Yesterday’s legal complaint lays out the entire chronology of Ehekircher and MacFarland, beginning with their first having sex in a motel room in Irvine, California, in 1986, when she was 17. The age of consent in California was and is 18.
The chronology, on which we’ll elaborate in upcoming articles, includes references to the enabling role of Mark Schubert, USA Swimming’s Olympic head coach from 2006 to 2010. According to the complaint, Schubert, coach of the Mission Viejo Nadadores, and his wife have an ownership interest in the Mission Viejo Swim Club. He is “one of the — if not the — most successful swim coach in the United States,” the complaint says, and “has also actively participated in the cover up of the sexual abuse of numerous high-level female American swimmers.”
March 6, 2018 “Sarah Ehekircher, Long-Time Coach, Tells of Her Youth Grooming and Abuse by Scott MacFarland, Her ‘Revictimization’ by USA Swimming’s 2010 Investigation, and Her Sexual Harassment by American Swimming Coaches Association Boss John Leonard,” https://concussioninc.net/?p=12656
We’ll be pulling together collected headline links in a single post. For now, readers can plug the term “Sarah Ehekircher” into the search bar at either https://concussioninc.net/?page_id=2359 or https://concussioninc.net/?page_id=15.