Ask/Answered is a weekly feature for reader-submitted questions. Follow the blog online at www.cumberlink.com:
What’s happening with the criminal case against Joey Sullenberger, the softball coach accused of sexual assault?
The January arrest of a softball coach from Carlisle on charges of sexual assault shocked the community.
Carlisle Police said that Joey Vincent Sullenberger, 49, of Carlisle, sexually assaulted at least four teenagers through his role as a private hitting coach at the former Central Penn Sportsplex. He provided one-on-one lessons with teenagers that on average lasted one hour.
What’s happened since the charges against Sullenberger were announced? Well, most importantly, he pleaded “no contest” on Aug. 28 to felony aggravated indecent assault, five counts of felony sexual assault by a sports official, and misdemeanor indecent assault, according to court documents. Fifteen other charges were dismissed.
Sentencing had been scheduled for Nov. 15, but was postponed to a later date that has not been finalized, according to court personnel.
He remains confined to Cumberland County Prison, with bail set at $750,000.
Sullenberger had over 20 years of experience with coaching and hitting lessons, according to the affidavit of probable cause from Carlisle Police. All of the incidents described in the affidavit had occurred in 2018.
In addition to his role with Central Penn Sportsplex, he had coached the Hummelstown-based Susquehanna Valley Slam travel girls fast-pitch softball team and had been hired in September 2018 as the head varsity girls softball coach for Carlisle High School. He was placed on leave by Carlisle Area School District in January and later fired.
Several youth sports organizations quickly distanced themselves from Central Penn Sportsplex in Carlisle, which was founded by Sullenberger and his daughter. The 25,000-square-foot sports complex was later sold and reopened under new ownership as Turf Time Athletics.
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Daniel Walmer covers public safety for The Sentinel. You can reach him by email at email@example.com or by phone at 717-218-0021.
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