VISTA — A substitute teacher in the Vista Unified School District and Carlsbad water polo coach was arrested Monday on suspicion of child molestation after allegedly engaging in lewd acts with a 13-year-old girl inside a parked car at an Oceanside park.
On Nov. 18, a woman contacted the Oceanside Police Department to report finding her daughter inside a vehicle with an adult male at Guajome Regional Park in Oceanside and that “inappropriate activity was taking place.”
The suspect was identified as Conner Chanove, 27, who resides in Carlsbad. He also works as a girls’ coach for the Seaside Water Polo Club in Carlsbad and previously worked as a lifeguard in the cities of Encinitas and Carlsbad.
Oceanside police were unable to locate Chanove on the night the crime occurred but were able to arrest him during a traffic stop on Monday, according to Sgt. Josh Morris.
Chanove was booked into Vista Detention Facility on several felony charges, including two charges of lewd and lascivious conduct with a child under 14, one count of luring a minor for sex, and one count of arranging a meeting with a minor.
The Vista Unified School District released a statement Tuesday regarding the investigation, stating they were contacted by law enforcement on Saturday evening.
“We are appalled by the thought that someone trusted to work with our children would betray their trust and innocence,” the district said in a statement. “Please be assured that this adult will not be on any campus in the District and that our administrative team will cooperate fully with law enforcement to ensure that justice is served
The Seaside Water Polo Club also addressed Chanove’s arrest in an email statement.
“The organization is shocked by this and the coach has been suspended,” the club said. “Although we are unaware of any incident in our program, the parents have been asked to contact authorities with any information.”
Morris said he could not confirm at this point whether the minor in the vehicle was a student of the Vista Unified School District and that the case is still under investigation.
Chanove’s bail has been set at $1 million. He will appear in court on Nov. 27.
Chanove has no previous arrests, according to Manove.
Anyone with information about this case is urged to contact the Oceanside Police Department Family Protection Unit at 760-435-4377.