NewsKansas City Public Safety


Former Paola High School coach arrested for alleged sex crimes involving minors

Prison Bars
Posted at 3:11 PM, May 24, 2023
and last updated 2023-05-24 17:55:28-04

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — Paola police Wednesday arrested local high school track coach Chad Kelsey after it received information regarding an alleged 2022 rape and other sexual assault allegations involving a former minor.

During the course of the investigation, police identified a second victim, who is also a minor.

Paola Capt. Eric Jenkins told the KSHB 41 I-Team officers executed a search warrant at Kelsey’s Paola house Wednesday morning and seized, among other items, the coach’s phone, computer and other electronics.

Jenkins said Kelsey, 46, is currently in the Miami County Jail and will remain there until his arraignment.

Paola police have forwarded the case to the Miami County Attorney’s Office for possible charges of rape, aggravated indecent liberties with a child, unlawful sexual relations and furnishing alcohol to a minor.

Jenkins said his office doesn’t have information about other possible victims, but “grooming behavior was an element of this case.”

He asked anyone with information about this case — or who is a potential victim — to contact Paola Det. Zach Mathies at (913-259-3631.

The I-Team also contacted the Paola School District about Kelsey’s arrested.

Superintendent Matthew Meek said the district fired Kelsey after learning of the coach’s arrest and the allegation.

Meek said Kelsey worked as a Paola High School track coach for 13 years with the district.

He never served as a full-time teacher, but did work one day as a substitute teacher this year.

“At this time, we are unaware of any allegations of misconduct as a part of any school-related activities or on district property," Meek said in a statement to families. " Mr. Kelsey’s position has been terminated.”

Meek continued, “We take these allegations seriously and are cooperating with law enforcement.”

Meek said counselors are available at the high school for students who want to talk with someone about this situation.

The I-Team on Wednesday also learned a family member of the potential victims reported the allegations about Kelsey and his arrest to the Kansas State High School Activities Association (KSHSAA).

The organization is the governing body of high school sports and activities in the state.

KSHSAA employees became mandatory reporters in May 2022 under a bill signed by Kansas Gov. Laura Kelly.

Kansas lawmaker Kristey Williams, of Augusta, sponsored the measure in response to a 2021 KSHB 41 investigation that revealed KSHSAA employees were not required to report allegations of abuse to law enforcement.

The family member who reported Kelsey to KSHSAA Wednesday said the organization told her it wouldn’t take a report unless the allegations had been reported to the school.

The family member pressed the issue and was connected to another KSHSAA employee. The family member claimed that other employee said he wasn’t aware he was a mandatory reporter and told her to call the school.

“He completely ignored anything I told them,” the family said.

When asked about the family member’s response, KSHSAA executive Bill Faflick told the I-Team: “Our staff does understand their responsibility of serving as mandatory reporters.”

Faflick said his office’s Track and Field administrator “took careful notes, shared them with me, and we went through the next steps together which included filing an electronic report with DCF (Department for Children and Families).”

Faflick also confirmed his staff asked the family member to contact the school.

“Ultimately, those school leaders have personnel responsibility for staff members,” he said. “As part of our protocol, we also contact school leaders to make sure they are aware of the report unless law enforcement asks us to wait until they take their next steps.”