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Park City coach reasonable using force in student confrontation, judge rules

Posted at 2:36 PM, May 30, 2023

PARK CITY, Utah — A judge ruled that a Park City High School tennis coach was reasonable in using force against a student during a confrontation last year, dismissing both charges against her.

In his ruling Friday regarding the aggravated child abuse charge against Lani Wilcox, Judge Richard Mrazik dismissed that charge and another for damage to a communication device. Both charges were dismissed with prejudice, meaning they cannot be refiled against Wilcox.

Wilcox was charged in September following an Aug. 29 confrontation with a 16-year-old student that began with a verbal altercation centered on the player's position on the team.

Court document showed that when Wilcox got close to the student's face, the player slapped the coach, who then allegedly grabbed the student by the neck and put her in a choke hold before taking her to the ground.

Wilcox allegedly grabbed the student's phone and walked away after the player was able to get out of the choke hold.

Photographs shared by Wilcox's attorney showed a large welt on the coach's face.

Wilcox, who originally entered a not guilty plea, was placed on administrative leave by the Park City School District following the incident. Her current status is unknown.