Ky. Coach Pleads Not Guilty in Player's Death
Louisville community tries to buoy football coach charged in 15-year-old player's heat death
At a church where he's a deacon and the high school where he coaches football, David Jason Stinson is well-liked enough to find himself surrounded by supporters despite prosecutors charging him in a player's death.
On Monday, Stinson pleaded not guilty to reckless homicide in the death of 15-year-old Pleasure Ridge Park High School offensive lineman Max Gilpin, who collapsed at a sweltering Aug. 20 practice after running sprints, sometimes in pads and helmet.
"They're dragging a very good man through the mud and I don't understand why," football booster Rodney Daugherty said of the coach.
A judge released Stinson without bond at the courthouse that attracted at least a dozen community members voicing their support for the first-year head coach. Gilpin's family also was at the hearing, but did not speak to reporters.
However, Jeff Gilpin and Michele Crockett, the player's divorced parents, have jointly sued the school's coaching staff, accusing them of negligence and "reckless disregard," with details of their son's health made part of the lawsuit.
It includes statements by Crockett, who disclosed that her son had taken the dietary supplement Creatine for a time but stopped in July when football practice started.
Creatine is an over-the-counter supplement and among the side effects listed by the National Institute of Health are cramps or muscle breakdown, heat intolerance and electrolyte imbalances, although it is unclear if any of those came into play in Gilpin's death. more
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