Soccer coach charged with sex crimes involving children | Crime
SALISBURY - A 69-year-old soccer coach is in the jail under a $500,000 bond facing several charges of sex crimes.
Ralph William Wager was booked into the Rowan County Detention Center Wednesday morning, charged with multiple sex crimes against a child.
According to investigators, the Rowan County Sheriff’s Office CID/SVU began investigating Wager in May 2012 after allegations surfaced that he had inappropriate sexually contact with a child under the age of 10 during the late 1980s.
Investigators say the alleged assaults happened between 1987 and 1989, while Wager was a soccer coach at Catawba College. The victim, who is now in his 30s and lives out of North Carolina, was at the school as a part of a swimming program.
According to investigators, the victim decided to come forward after he Googled Wager's name and saw that he was still working with children in Charlotte. He told police that he was afraid that another child would be hurt.
Wager is now a coach with Charlotte-based Soccer Association.
Investigators say they are trying to determine the exact location of the alleged assualts from the 80s, and have not determined if anything took place on the college campus.
They are also investigating to see if there are any other victims in Rowan County or Charlotte.
Wager was inducted into the Catawba College Sports Hall of Fame in 2008 and was instrumental in the founding of soccer teams at high schools in Rowan County.
During the course of the investigation, investigators were joined by an SBI Agent and Charlotte Mecklenburg Police Investigators. They were able to gathered evidence and obtained warrants for the arrest of Wager.
He was arrested on Tuesday at his Charlotte home and charged with three Felony counts of First Degree Sex Offense with a Child, three Felony counts of Crimes Against Nature, and three counts of Felony Indecent Liberties with a Child.
Investigators say no evidence was found in his apartment. Wager is reportedly being cooperative with police.
Wager was placed in Rowan County Detention Center.
The investigation continues and anyone with information about this investigation is asked to contact Lt. Chad Moose or Detective Sara Benfield at (704) 216-8739.