CHULA VISTA, Calif. - A former walk-on assistant football coach at Mar Vista High School was sentenced Wednesday to five years in state prison for engaging in lewd acts with a teenage girl over a several-month period, beginning when she was 13.
Edward Aaron Mendoza, 27, engaged in sex acts with the ninth-grader at the Imperial Beach campus from September 2015 to the end of February 2016, authorities said. The girl turned 14 during that period.
Mendoza was also ordered to register as a sex offender for life.
Mendoza was arrested in April, after the girl's father discovered that she was having "extensive phone conversations with Mendoza and was having an inappropriate relationship with him," Lt. Dan Brislin said.
"Detectives discovered Mendoza had fostered an ongoing relationship with the victim and engaged in sexual activity with her at school over a period of about six months," the lieutenant said previously.
In court Wednesday, Deputy District Attorney Carolyn Matzger read a letter written by the victim's parents. In the letter, the parents described how Mendoza stole their daughter's sexual and social innocence.
"His choice to sexually abuse our daughter has led to lost work, sick days taken by all and the need for family counseling," Matzger read. "(Our daughter) once a confident and outgoing woman now fears social events and fears abject shame and anger about what she was led to believe by Mendoza to be a normal and sexual relationship."
In his plea in July to four charges, including lewd acts on a child, Mendoza admitted touching the girl's private areas and having her send him a photograph of her private parts.
Mendoza left Mar Vista High last December, when the football season ended, said Manny Rubio, spokesman for the Sweetwater Union High School District.
Mendoza is one of three Mar Vista High staffers who pleaded guilty in recent months to having sex with students.
Alejandro Rodriguez worked as a tutor at Mar Vista. He pleaded guilty to statutory rape.
In August, 48-year-old Martin Albert Gallegos, a substitute teacher and ROTC instructor, pleaded guilty to having sex with a 17-year-old female student. He was sentenced to one year in San Diego County jail and three years of felony formal probation. Gellagos had worked for the Sweetwater Union High School District since fall 2015 and was arrested in April. He was not required to register as a sex offender.