St. Paul high school volleyball coach charged with sex crimes involving a student

A volleyball coach at Como Park Senior High School is accused of criminal sexual conduct involving a teenage student.

Keng Cha, 29, is charged with first-degree criminal sexual conduct while in a position of authority and third-degree criminal sexual conduct while in a prohibited occupational relationship. 

Court documents filed Friday allege Cha had sexual contact with a student he coached at Como Park Senior High School in St. Paul. During that time, they allegedly talked via text and met in person, which reportedly escalated to sexual contact. 

The student met with police at the school on Sept. 28 and reported the encounters. The student told authorities Cha got her number off the volleyball roster and began texting her in 2022. After about a month of texting, he began asking for pictures and sexual favors, which eventually escalated, charges said.

The student told police there were a few sexual encounters that took place in Cha’s car, with one of the most recent happening on school grounds in the back parking lot, charges allege. 

As the teen spoke with police in the office at school, Cha sent her text messages, including one saying, "Did you say anything to anyone about us?" charges read. 

During the interview, police learned the athletic director was meeting with Cha at the school to terminate his employment. Police then located Cha and took him into custody. Cha allegedly told investigators he had been in a "personal relationship" with the 15-year-old, which "progressed to sexual contact," charges read.

Cha remains in custody at the Ramsey County Jail and is scheduled to make his first court appearance on Oct. 2. 

A St. Paul Public School District spokesperson told FOX 9 it does not comment on criminal matters.