MIAMI GARDENS, Fla. – Darius Lawshea, the well-known coach of the Miami Gardens Xpress track club, is already in jail facing charges of allegedly raping and molesting two young girls. On Wednesday, more charges were filed after two more young women stepped forward accusing Lawshea of sexually abusing them as teenagers.
It’s also been revealed that a Miami police officer might have accused him of inappropriate actions several years ago.
Lawshea was arrested by Miami Gardens police on Sunday and charged with sexual battery of a 14-year-old a decade ago, and molestation of her younger sister last year when she was also 14.
He’s now also facing a case out of Miami Shores from this summer, where the victim says he would touch her inappropriately. She also alleges Lawshea recorded her with his phone while she was doing squats and posted it on his Instagram account.
The other case is from Miami Gardens in 2012. That victim claims Lawshea raped her and says she never told anyone, thinking that because he was an adult, nobody would believe her.
In total, Lawshea now faces four counts of sexual battery, four counts of lewd and lascivious molestation of a minor and one charge of taking obscene pictures of a minor.
He is being held without bond, and investigators believe there could be even more victims out there.
Tobe Nwahiri, an attorney for Lawshea, released the following statement Wednesday:
“My client and I are just being informed about these new accusations. Mr. Lawshea is a well respected member of the community who has made a lasting impact on many youth in South Florida, some who are now adults. Since information was spread to the public regarding this investigation, my client has received an outpouring of support from members of the community and others across the nation; those who know his character. My client appreciates the support, and maintains that he is innocent. Should charges be filed, my client intends on entering a plea of not guilty.”
Also newly revealed Wednesday, a civilian investigative panel report from the City of Miami shows that Lawshea accused an officer who coached a rival track club of harassing and slandering him. The report says: “Mr. Lawshea stated on April 26 & 27, Officer Williams called him a ‘pedophile’ and used profanity in front of the parents and students at a track meet.”
The report raises the question of how long signs of his alleged behavior have been ignored.
The Miami Gardens Xpress track club, which Lawshea helped run, posted the following statement on social media:
“We are aware of the recent allegations against one of our coaches, and we understand the seriousness of the claims. At this time we have no comment regarding the allegations and ask that you keep our MGX families, athletes and coaches in your prayers.”