Ex-Torrance High Wrestling Coach Pleads Not Guilty to Lewd Acts With Dozens of Boys

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Ex-Torrance High School wrestling coach Thomas Joseph Snider on April 16, 2015, pleaded not guilty to charges in connection with alleged assaults on more than two dozen students. (Credit: KTLA)

Ex-Torrance High School wrestling coach Thomas Joseph Snider on April 16, 2015, pleaded not guilty to charges in connection with alleged assaults on more than two dozen students. (Credit: KTLA)

The former head coach of the Torrance High School wrestling team pleaded not guilty in court Thursday to 41 counts of lewd acts and child molesting in connection with alleged assaults on more than two dozen students.

Thomas Joseph Snider was charged with 33 felony counts of lewd acts upon a child ages 14 or 15 and eight misdemeanor counts of child molesting, according to a news release from the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office.

Snider was accused of lewd acts on more than two dozen student-athletes on his team ranging between the ages of 13 and 16 years old between September 2013 and February 2015, the release stated.

Most of the lewd acts were alleged to have taken place on school grounds, the DA’s office said.

Detectives with the Torrance Police Department began investigating Snider back in January after several students accused the coach of sexual misconduct. He was placed on administrative leave while police conducted the investigation.

Snider was being held on $900,000 bail and was due back in court on April 20.

If convicted as charged, Snider faced a possible maximum sentence of more than 37 years in state prison.