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Diablo Valley College professor, former coach faces human trafficking, sexual assault charges

Diablo Valley College instructor and former coach faces human trafficking, sexual assault charges
Diablo Valley College instructor and former coach faces human trafficking, sexual assault charges 00:45

PLEASANT HILL – A professor and former track coach at Diablo Valley College in Contra Costa County is facing multiple felony charges, including human trafficking and sexual assault, prosecutors said.

According to the Contra Costa County District Attorney's Office, 39-year-old Kyle Lee Whitmore of Crockett was arrested on September 7 for allegedly trafficking two women for prostitution. The arrest came after one of victims notified campus authorities, prompting a joint investigation with the sheriff's office.

Prosecutors said Whitmore is facing two counts of human trafficking, two counts of pandering, one count of pimping and four counts of forcible sexual penetration by a foreign object.

According to the school's website, Whitmore is an instructor of Communications Studies at the Pleasant Hill campus. 

Kyle Whitmore  Diablo Valley College

Whitmore is being held at the Contra Costa County jail in Martinez without bail. He appeared in court Tuesday afternoon but did not enter a plea, according to the Contra Costa County District Attorney's office.

Whitmore's defense attorney asked the judge to put over the arraignment until Sept. 19 and the judge agreed. Whitmore will remain in custody at the Martinez Detention Facility, the district attorney's office confirmed.

Diablo Valley College issued a statement that noted Whitmore – who is "a tenured communications faculty member and former coach" – was placed on administrative leave. 

"The District is grateful to staff who, through proper training, were able to identify a serious situation and quickly report it to our Police Services, who subsequently communicated with the Sheriff's Office and District Attorney. This is an ongoing investigation, and there are more facts to ascertain," the statement read. "We ask the community to be patient and allow processes to move forward without making assumptions or contributing to speculation."

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"The District is devastated by the seriousness of the allegations that have been raised thus far. The safety of our students and staff is our main priority. We take seriously any accusations of inappropriate behavior by our employees and honor the expectation that our students, staff, and visitors have to be safe when they visit our campuses," the statement concluded.

In a statement Tuesday, District Attorney Diana Becton said there are multiple tools to help curb human trafficking and to connect victims to services.

"For example, our office has a local human trafficking hotline, we have community based service partners like Community Violence Solutions, and there's a national toll-free help line that's available 24/7," Becton said.

Anyone with information about the case is asked to call the Investigation Division of the Contra Costa County Sheriff's Office at 925-313-2600. To report cases of human trafficking in Contra Costa County, call the District Attorney's hotline at 925-957-8658 or the national helpline at 211.

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