Former East County high school baseball coach pleads not guilty to theft charges

EL CAJON (CNS) – A former Monte Vista High School baseball coach pleaded not guilty Thursday to theft charges stemming from his handling of team funds while he coached at the East County school from 2003 to 2007.

Larry Rinehart, 59, is charged with one count of grand theft and two counts of theft by an employee, said Deputy District Attorney Daniel Shim.

Rinehart's wife, Margaret, was also charged with a single count of grand theft.

Each defendant faces up to three years in state prison if convicted, according to the prosecutor.

No further details were released, but authorities said the case has been under investigation for more than two years.

According to published reports, Larry Rinehart was until recently a teacher at Helix High School where he taught accounting and personal finance.

He and his wife have filed for bankruptcy twice, once in 1995 and again in 2008, according to published reports.

The couple, who remain out of custody, will be back in court April 1 for a readiness conference and April 13 for a preliminary hearing.

Categories: KUSI