Created: February 19, 2020 06:12 PM
ALBUQUERQUE, N.M.— A 24-year-old Pecos High School boys basketball coach who is accused of blackmailing teenage girls for sex is being held without bond.
According to court documents, Joshua Rico would exchange sexually explicit pictures with a freshman girl at Pecos High School over Snapchat.
The superintendent for Pecos district issued a statement that said they immediately contacted law enforcement and fired Rico after they became aware of the allegations, but State Police say it’s really the 14-year-old girl that deserves credit for this arrest.
“You know it takes a lot for a juvenile child to come forward,” said Dusty Francisco, a spokesman with State Police.
State Police officials said because the girl told the school counselor, they were able to find out this was not an isolated incident.
"Through the investigation, there were three other victims that probably wouldn't have come forward because of the blackmailing that was going on,” Francisco said.
Court documents show a pattern of behavior going back to 2014. Rico is accused of exchanging sexual pictures and videos with teenage girls—some starting as consensual relationships—but then he threatened to release those images if they did not have oral sex with him.
"Everybody is on social media and there are dangers,” Francisco said.
Prosecutors are trying to hold Rico until trial, but they’ll need to prove he’s a danger to his community.
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