A former track coach at Hillcrest High School is facing prison time after admitting he engaged in sexual activity with a 16-year-old student.
Mikael Dwayne Cooper-Falls, who had been fired in May of last year over the allegations, changed his plea in district court from not guilty on all charges to guilty on two counts: second-degree statutory rape and sexual contact with a student.
The guilty pleas did not include any kind of agreement with prosecutors regarding sentencing for the plea. The other pending charges against Cooper-Falls are anticipated to be dropped by prosecutors.
Court documents outline the case against Cooper-Falls, stating that two females told officials at Hillcrest that Cooper-Falls was having sex with a 16-year-old student. The incidents were taking place at Cooper-Falls home a few miles from the school.
The district contacted the Greene County Sheriff’s Office about the allegations, and also called the hotline for the Missouri Department of Social Services Children’s Division.
Cooper-Falls began the relationship with the girl via texting and it progressed into a sexual relationship.
Cooper-Falls was a paraprofessional at Hillcrest, or a teaching assistant, and an assistant coach for the track and football teams. He had been a starting running back for Hillcrest’s football team during his time as a student and played for Missouri state from 2009-2013. He had been named as one of the “Elite 11” class in 2017 by the Missouri Sports Hall of Fame.
If sentenced to the maximum on the two charges, Cooper-Falls could face 11 years in state prison. However, the class D and class E felonies could also bring probation.
He will be sentenced on April 24, 2020 by Presiding Judge Michael Cordonnier.