M45 long sprinter Kettrell Berry facing child-molestation charges

Kettrell at 2005 Hawaii nationals.

Our longtime friend Kettrell Berry, whose young son is a running prodigy and whose masters friends are many, is sitting in a San Diego jail today after his arrest yesterday on 25 child-molestation charges. U-T San Diego reported: Kettrell Berry, who was a supervisor at the San Diego Center for Children for nine years until being fired a couple weeks ago, was taken into custody by San Diego Police Friday afternoon following a lengthy investigation. He is being held in lieu of $1.12 million in bail and is scheduled to be arraigned in San Diego Superior Court Tuesday. David McCaslin, chief executive officer of the small school, said the academy “is devastated by the apparent betrayal of trust.” Kettrell was a relay teammate of mine at nationals and coached Jai Black to her world 400 title last year. This news hits me like a death in the family. I hope he (and his friends and family) will survive this.
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May 5, 2012

51 Responses

  1. James Chinn - May 5, 2012

    As a friend of Kettrell ,I hope it’s not true . I pray for the just resolution for all involved.

  2. peter taylor - May 5, 2012

    In late March, while I was lying in a hospital bed in Virginia awaiting surgery, Kettrell was nice enough to give me a call. Like Jim, I hope there will be a just resolution for all involved.

  3. Shae - May 5, 2012

    “You hope that “HE” (and his friends and family) survive this”????? Are you kidding me?? If these charges are true, who gives a sh*t about “HIM”? I hope that those poor, innocent children survive what has happened to them.

  4. Ken Stone - May 5, 2012

    Story has gone international. This is the UK Daily Mail report: http://bit.ly/Jo1TN2

    Our San Diego Channel 8 showed a cell photo of him being arrested outside his home. A reporter talked to his neighbors, who called him a quiet guy seen with a young son. They had no clue about his track career and legions of friends. The report showed some Web photos, but nothing of him running.

  5. Nolan Shaheed - May 5, 2012

    I know Kettrell as a friend and gentleman and will withhold judgment until all the facts are given and hope others will as well.

  6. Ken Stone - May 5, 2012

    Channel 8 video is here: http://bit.ly/IxQ2KT

    Shows neighbors being interviewed.

  7. Bubba Sparks - May 5, 2012

    I agree; innocent until proven guilty. My prayers are wth you either way.

  8. Concerned Advocate - May 5, 2012

    I have spent time with him in a professional capacity. He was always arrogant and smarmy. He worked with children with special needs. This is a disgrace to all that work diligently to provide needy, at-risk students, with the proper tools to improve their lives. Taking advantage of a child is despicable. Now he has ruined his son’s life as well as a special needs child.

  9. Cornell - May 5, 2012

    I am totally speechless.

  10. West Coast Sprinter - May 6, 2012

    I am praying for all those involved.

  11. al cestero - May 6, 2012

    my prayers are for everyone involved…

  12. Dave Hockersmith - May 6, 2012

    I also ask everyone not to rush to judgement until all the facts are known. If he is guilty he deserves everything the law can throw him. If he is not he will need everyone’s support and understanding. All too often in the past years we’ve read similar stories and condemned the accused, only to find out later the accuser made up the story and ruined many lives. Be concerned and pray for those involved but don’t rush to judgement.

  13. Pete Magill - May 6, 2012

    Kettrell has not only always been a really good guy in my interactions with him, and he’s always sought me out after my races to congratulate me on my performances – kinda unique for a sprinter when it comes to us distance guys. A meet has always been better when he was in attendance. Like several others posting here, I’ll withhold judgment.

  14. Cynic - May 6, 2012

    25 molestation charges after a lengthy investigation? Doesn’t sound too spontaneous. Typical human predator putting himself in a position where he had endless access to his victims, and going out of his way to be nice to everyone else to cover his despicable acts. Hope he fries. Oh sorry I forgot – but he’s a good guy.

  15. LEZ - May 6, 2012

    Peace.K.B [ I pray for you bro ] you are in my prayers.

  16. 2002 serra track star - May 6, 2012

    he didn’t do it i don’t why these people putting him through this…

  17. Michael - May 6, 2012

    Ken I don’t know you sir, but how dare you judge so quickly. I train with kettrell for many yr’s. He is a good man with a great heart. If your a friend why would you post something like this up on a track website?. “some friend” and on another note why you put “Jia black” name in your story. Are you trying to mess up her life to!! Next time think before you start typing crap!!

  18. T-Sweet - May 6, 2012

    I ran with him he was a teammate of mine and we coached at Mesa college together. I hope it’s not true my prayers are out to him and his family

  19. Sclark - May 6, 2012

    @ Dave Hockersmith; I couldnt have said it better myself. I was coached by this “gentlman” at Mesa College and he was nothing but nice to me. I have seen him numerous times at my childrens youth track meets with his team wife and children. To hear this is appauling, and if this is a big lie or retaliation of some sort I hope you understand the lives you are tearing apart with it…. I hope and pray this is not true. I’ll be praying for any and everyone involved.

  20. Jai Black - May 6, 2012

    The best thing is not to judge inspite of the media..innocent until proven guilty. I cherish my relationship with Kettrell Berry. Always have, Always will.

  21. Just Me - May 6, 2012

    He is my former supervisor. I cannot believe this. I can’t stop thinking about it. How terribly sad.

  22. Michael schexnayder - May 7, 2012

    I am a student at the school and to those who posted negatively please keep that to yourself. He is a highly respected authority figure who made a huge mistake. Yes it is a heinous crime but one, the girl it happened to consented the whole time and two, I still can’t begin to fathom why he would do this but if you think that talking shit and critizing him will do anything your dead wrong. Even though he did this I still have high respect for him and hope he and his family get throught this.

  23. Michael schexnayder - May 7, 2012

    My name is Michael Schexnayder and I am a current student at the school. I have the upmost respect for Mr.Kettrell and to those who think they can critisize him for a mistake you are dead wrong. He is a highly respected authority firgure who made one of the dumbest mistake. I still can’t begin to fathom why he did this but I have and always remain a supporter for him. By the way the girl was 16 and consented and no one likes her.

  24. saladin allah - May 7, 2012

    Cornell told me this just yesterday. I won’t believe till the facts are evident !

  25. Milan Jamrich - May 7, 2012

    I dont know whether he did it or not. It sounds like all charges are from one person(?). He is being held in lieu of $1.12 million in bail, which indicates to me that they have a pretty good case.

  26. Linda Carty - May 7, 2012

    I’m with Jai on this one. Lets wait for the facts, not the media hype.

  27. Too Bad - May 7, 2012

    Mr. Schexnayder, you may mean to defend him but your statement makes it seem like he was messing with a 16 year old(illegal) and it’s OK because no one limes her(stupid).

  28. Michael - May 7, 2012

    @schexanayder you said your a student at the school? I’m lost here!! How would have access to a computer. I was a CDC AT THE CENTER. so Let’s not play around here.. who are you really? The center has ways of getting read of people tht are good people And road models to the kids.. Let’s just wait and see!

  29. michael schexnayder - May 7, 2012

    yes I am a student and who the fuck are you to say im not Mr. robbins is my home room and Mr. T was my gov. teacher and Ms. melissa has most my classes so piss off I dont care if your a CDC I lived at Clark and I dont recall a Michael working as a CDC there except for Big tall white mike. I have access to a computer because I looked up what happened to Kettrell. S the real question is who are you?

  30. Former SDCC Employee - May 7, 2012

    At Michael #27
    Michael S is in fact an NPS student at the Center…I know the kid…I used to work there too and I agree with your comment about letting good ones go..The kid is who he says he is…It is a hard thing for us all to swallow and I do not want to jump to any accusations until the evidence has proved itself in court…I am praying for everyone involved…this is all just ugly…

  31. Chris Stone - May 7, 2012

    I have always known Kettrell to be friendly, helpful and supportive — just a really nice fella.

    I’m withholding judgment and waiting to see what happens.

    He is in our prayers.

  32. Frank Lulich - May 7, 2012

    I cannot fathom why this article would bring out information mentioning Kettrell’s son or Jai Black. It seems not appropriate and perhaps even a bit unethical to me, but what do I know. Prayers for everyone involved.

  33. IDONTRUSSDEMKRAKKKAZ - May 8, 2012

    HAVING BEEN ON THE RECIEVIN END OF FALSE ACCUSATIONZ, LIVIN IN THIS WORLD OF BLAME IT ON A NIGGA, AND HAVING KNOWN THE MAN WHO STANDS ACCUSED, I CHOOSE TO RESERVE MY JUDGEMENT UNTIL ALL THE FACTS ARE IN!! I WAS COACHED BY KETRELL @MESA COLLEGE AND HAD THE UTMOST RESPECT FOR HIM. AND TO THE CONCERNED ADVOCATE, WTF DOES ARROGANCE HAVE TO DO WITH THIS CASE?? I GET THAT U DONT LIKE HIM. I GET THAT! BUT YOUR DISDAIN FOR HIM DOESNT CONVICT HIM! I HOPE THE TRUTH PREVAILS.

  34. Former Track Student - May 8, 2012

    Um Kettrell trained me for a few years. These allegations don’t surprise me not one bit. I know first hand that this man is capable of doing these things so Im not all surprised. I just hope his kid(s) and the children’s lives he messed up will be able to get through this tragedy. It’s sad because he was a damn good coach! But as a person, he was/is a sick individual .

  35. John - May 8, 2012

    Here are the charges according to local newspapers:

    “Kettrell Berry was booked into San Diego Central Jail about 7:15 p.m. Friday for suspicion of 25 mostly felony counts, including lewd and lascivious acts involving a victim 14 or 15 years of age, penetration by foreign object on a person under 16 and oral copulation with a person under 16, according to jail records.”

    Obviously he is innocent until proven guilty. What amazes me are comments like those in posts #22 and 23 “:

    …the girl it happened to consented the whole time…”, “…even though he did this I still have high respect for him…” and “…By the way the girl was 16 and consented and no one likes her…”

    Are you kidding me??. The perpetrator is 49!! and the victim is 14 or 15!! Whether of not she “consented” is unimportant. He is 49 years old and took advantage of a teenager. Anybody out there have a 14 or 15 year old daughter?

    What a sad statement about how some people in our society think.

  36. shon - May 8, 2012

    My child goes to that school. When they informed us a few wks ago (they didn’t give teachers name) I just prayed. As a parent you want to trust adults at your child’s school. Rather the teen agreed or rather anyone likes her fact is she is a child. When I was 15 I had a child with a 22yr old man he went to jail for 2 and a half yrs at the time i thought it wasn’t right I agreed to sleep with him but as an adult now and a mother of a teen daughter (child i had w/22 yr old) its not ok as adults we need to think like adults. Just keep praying y’all its in Gods hands now

  37. Michael schexnayder - May 8, 2012

    @ John your right but seeing how I am entitled to my own opinion did you even know who he was? He has helped countless times and has done numerous amount of positive things in the schools community and his own. The fact that he made a very very bad decision doesn’t make him a monster it makes him human. people make mistakes and shouldn’t be judged by them. I am sure all of us made some kind of huge mistake and didnt like the fact people critized us for it. Im sure if Kettrell saw this he would feel the same way.

  38. Chris Stone - May 8, 2012

    John, I think the difference between you and many of the people who have posted here is Kettrell has been our friend or acquaintance and we are concerned about him and hope for the best.

    It’s easy for you to instantly condemn him and us. That takes no character.

    We can read and know the gravity and implications of this if he is guilty. But to withhold judgment and give someone the benefit of the doubt until all the facts are out is mature and compassionate, not something sad for society at all.

    And some have suggested that having their name associated with Kattrell is something shameful or sinful, which is totally wrong.

    The master’s track community is a caring, supportive one. Many people feel that this is not in character with what they have observed of Kattrell.

    No one is condoning the crime if it is true.

    Maybe, John, we have different definitions of friendship and humanity. I have learned from my faith about judging others.

  39. Richard Holmes - May 8, 2012

    Look, it’s as simple as this:

    If he is found innocent of all charges, he is due to have his name cleard in a public manner! Just as he was accused in public, he should be cleared in public!

    But, if the charges are found to be true and he is sentenced, then he must pay his price for his lack in judgment, character and stupidity. Because no matter what the circumstances, the victim was big-time under age — far under age. And folks, if found to be true, there’s no excuse for that, period! NONE!

    Let’s wait and see…

  40. Just me - May 8, 2012

    I knew Kettrell also. Lets wait and see what holds out. THis comment log kind of reminds me of that movie, not sure if it was a true story, but everyone loved this little white girl back in slavery days. She had friends and family but then they found out that she was half black and her friends and family turned on her. I guess they never really loved her at all then…The same is with Kettrell. Whether he did this or not…people have to understand he is human and we all make mistakes.
    I see older men looking at young girrls ALL the time. People hurt people in different ways. All wrongdoing is the same. Kettrells friends will be there with him even if this comes to be true. I would hate to have friends that love me one day and curse me the next. What does that say about you?

  41. mike - May 8, 2012

    Hey, chris

    I have compassion for only (1) person in this scenario. That compassion is reserved for the alleged victim. Mr. Berry not only took advantage of her, he was a person of power and supervision over her. 25 counts! He did this over and over again!

    Taking advantage of a minor takes zero ‘character’.

  42. Jason - May 8, 2012

    http://www.fox5sandiego.com/news/kswb-exschool-admin-pleads-not-guilty-to-child-molest-20120508,0,6389118.story

    Check out the link above for an update on how things went in court today. Notice that the prosecution is not going on the reports of the alleged victim, but by another staff member who became suspicious based on their interactions. Also note: The prosecution does not mention that the specific actions listed in the charges were even observed by this staff member directly.

    As said, let’s not jump to judge someone since we all live under laws that are supposed to guarantee that we are indeed innocent until proven guilty (even though the media often times makes this a very difficult bill to fill).

    Now the following statements are not meant to condone the actions if they did occur, but meant more as additional food for thought. How many of you remember when you were 16? I do. I remember I was having consensual sex with my girlfriend at the time. Why? Because I was a teenager, and I was equipped with the raging hormones to feel so compelled, just like the rest of the teens out there. Did I know what I was doing, and what it meant for my life? Absolutely! Did I care? No! Again this isn’t meant to say that if he is guilty that his actions were right, but it’s meant more as a reminder to all of us how at the age of 16, many children are not as innocent as we parents wish they still were. Most people know very well what they are doing by the time they are 16. They do lack the life experience (and with it the judgement that comes with that experience) though, and that’s why the legal age to be considered an adult is still 18 (even though 18 is a debatable age for some people :D). However, at 16, you can no longer get away with being considered a total saint in that situation.

    Again, I really hope that people reserve their judgements until they know all the facts. If you were in his shoes, you would demand the same. Do unto others as you would have them do unto you.

    Take care.

  43. Rawle Crichlow - May 8, 2012

    When I first heard this I was floored and I am sure quick to judge both individuals, even if for a short while. However, as a few days have past I must remember the below words. Let’s pray for ALL involved and for ALL of you to BE NICE on here. Peace Folks.

    Matt. 7:1 “Do not judge, or you too will be judged.”

    John 8:7
    Jesus faced a mob that was eager to execute a woman caught in adultery. He put a stop to it with a simple challenge: anyone who has no sin in their life should step forward and throw the first stone. That sentence is often cited as a reminder to avoid judging others when there are faults in your own life that need to be addressed.

    Matthew 7:5
    You hypocrite, first take the plank out of your own eye, and then you will see clearly to remove the speck from your brother’s eye.

  44. michael schexnayder - May 8, 2012

    hey mike do us all a favor and keep the negativity to yourself please thank you. I had time to reflect on my earlier posts that i was being unfair to the victim. I posted towards the end of my comment that no one liked her. As I read it over again that last bit ran trough my head over and over again. I then realized that i have become a bully and the victim was not only a victim of this crime but of me cyber bullying the vic. As I read through the later posts all the negative ones about Kettrell where criticisms and trash talk. and if anyone on here is or has been either a teacher or victim would agree with me that this is considered cyber bullying. Your making put downs of some one who 1)an amazing person who made ONE mistake versus ALL THE COUNTLESS POSITIVE THINGS HE HAS DONE 2) is not here defend himself and 3) Does not deserve this kinda talk. Yeah sure he did this heinous crime but look at all the good he has done. The things he taught me as a boy growing up into a young man is unfathomable. I remember one time where I was mad at someone and wanted to stab this person. Kettrell asked me ” hey tanker battalion whats bugging you? ” I was too mad to reply. He then said ” you look like you lost your best friend. ” and I told him i did and wanted to kill him for that. He then told me ” A real Friend sticks by you through the thick shit the thin shit and every shit in between.” He said “Life is too short to get mad over losing a friend, I guarantee that along your roads in life you meet enough people to call your “friends” seven fold. ” The thing is he was able to deescalate me before I made a very grave mistake. Let me ask all the people who posted negatively on here a question. Did you ever know any one who you thought you knew and made a mistake whether it be big or small? How did you react to finding out about it? Did that change your view of that person? If so your just as human as the person whos view hasn’t changed because of this. All i am saying is that your entitled to your own opinion but please this is here to support him and the victim as well. so if its not something you wanna post please try to refrain from posting or im just gonna keep posting things up like this because there is already enough hate and criticism in the world and it is definitely not needed here. @former CDC thanks for having my back who ever you i appreciate it :).

  45. michael schexnayder - May 8, 2012

    @too bad: That is the bit that ran through my head and yes it was stupid for me to say but do you feel good for calling a kid stupid for posting his opinion? If you so then I feel bad for you because of that. thank you that is all :).

  46. Richard Holmes - May 10, 2012

    @ Jason

    “Food for thought?”

    Come on’, man!!! If all of this comes to light as true, it’s because someone who is “gorwn” over 45 years of age and of an authority position, having sexual relations with a 15-or-16 year old! Dude, get a CLUE!

    This has nothing to do with raging hormones…

    I’ve met Kettrell in the past and he seemed like a nice guy to me and this is why I’m waiting for the courts to handle this before passing final judgment upon him, but your comments are just plain ignorant! And if you think you’re helping in his defense — you’re not.

  47. Jason - May 10, 2012

    @Richard Holmes

    Take a step back, breathe, and calm down…

    Are we calm now? Good! As I stated in my original post, “Now the following statements are not meant to condone the actions if they did occur…” But what I said isn’t any less ignorant than for you to think that “over 45″ is a measure of a person’s supposed maturity. According to the law, a man who is 19 would be just as guilty as a man who is “over 45″. Since it’s obviously the law aspect you’re arguing, I do not disagree that this would be wrong if it were indeed true (again reserving judgement on Kettrell due to my own lack of evidence).

    In my post, when I made the comments regarding the mindset of someone at the age of 16 was not meant to be a defense for Kettrell, but more of a general societal statement on the view cognitive development at that age. However, the first paragraph of my first post was just pointing out my thoughts on how the prosecution came off in the video I linked. By my estimation, I thought the prosecution seemed unprepared. That is all. If you took that as a defense, then that is your prerogative.

    Back on my “food for thought” stuff, since I do enjoy discussion: What are your thoughts on “someone who is ‘grown’ over 45 years of age and of authority position, having sexual relations with…” and 18-19 year old?

    As an aside, I’d love to read what you have to say on how I’m “ignorant”, with the assumption that you know what that word actually means.

    Take care!

  48. Richard Holmes - May 10, 2012

    Jason

    First of all, if you say “it’s my perogative” then why even respond? At least I have the guts and pride in my statements to respond with more than my first name, on this subject. People know me in the track and field and masters track and field community and I’m not afraid to let my identity known…

    Second, you want to make this a discussion on society, rather than what the subject is about — this particular case. We have laws in this land. And the fact that a grown man may of had sexual relations with someone who is still considered under age(by law)– is a crime, period. If she was 18? If he was 19, 20, 21, etc? — we could do the what if game forever… Stick to the facts of this case.

    Holmes – OUT!

  49. Jason - May 10, 2012

    People can be anonymous on the internet for a reason. It has nothing to do with my supposed guts. The 3 tours in Iraq and 2 in Afghanistan speak enough about my pride and guts.

    Regardless, I haven’t competed in track and field since I was in high school, so you wouldn’t know me anyways, name or not.

  50. Richard Holmes - May 11, 2012

    @ Jason

    Again, you’re not sticking to the subject. I NEVER questioned your guts as someone who served our country. So why even take it to that?

    I was talking about not being afraid to let all know who you are when you’re making statements about this case and possible crime by an adult to a minor… I speak my mind and I’m not embarrased to let all know who I am — That’s all.

  51. 211 - May 11, 2012

    DNA

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