Three women have filed a lawsuit alleging sexual harassment and sexual abuse against John Rembao, a well-known track and field coach. The lawsuit also names the NCAA and the NCAA Board of Governors for what the victims allege are dozens of incidents of sexual harassment and abuse when Rembao coached them.
The lawsuit has been filed in US District Court for the Northern District of California. The victims are seeking class-action status, punitive damages as well as the adoption of corrective steps by the NCAA. The victims have argued that the NCAA failed to protect them despite the schools being aware of Rembao’s alleged sexual abuse.
Rembao Suspended after an Illustrious Career
As specialist in the high jump, Rembao has coached 4 Olympians, 15 individual NCAA champions and 93 All-Americans. He has also enjoyed other coveted positions with the US Track and Field and served as women’s high jump development coordinator for over 10 years.
All these years, Rembao moved from one college program to the next, from Cal Poly to the University of Arizona, from the University of Texas to Southern Methodist University, and from Stanford to the University of California. He held the position of assistant coach at most of those schools.
Most recently, Rembao was the head track and field coach at Los Gatos High School in Northern California. He said that he no longer has this job. In December, the US Center for SafeSport suspended him for allegations of misconduct. SafeSport has not revealed the nature of the allegations.
Three Women who Turned Rembao In
The three women who suffered Rembao’s acts of sexual harassment and sexual abuse and then decided to sue include:
- Erin Aldrich, a 2000 Olympian and eight-time all-American in the high jump who was coached by Rembao at Arizona and Texas
- Jessica Johnson, a high jumper who was coached by Rembao at Texas and later became a two-time all-American at Arkansas
- Londa Bevins, a middle-distance runner who was coached by Rembao at Texas and later became a seven-time all-American at Arkansas.
All of them were recruited and coached by Rembao in the late 1990s and early 2000s.
Rembao Denies Allegations
Rembao, 59, who is currently assistant director of employer relations at the University of California Santa Cruz, has come out to say he has no idea why SafeSport suspended him, and has denied all the allegations made against him in the lawsuit.
“This is ridiculous,” he said. “It never happened. This is completely false. This is just making me angry because this is all crap.” Rembao also said that he left Los Gatos High School for “personal, family reasons.”
According to legal experts, the lawsuit against Rembao could alter the landscape for NCAA athletes who want to make claims of sexual harassment or sexual assault.
Consult with a Skilled Sexual Harassment Lawyer in California
If you or a loved one has been a victim of sexual harassment, you can receive the right legal advice from highly experienced sexual harassment attorneys at Makarem & Associates in California. Call310-312-0299 today or email at [email protected].