A girls' basketball and track coach at Bellflower High School pleaded not guilty today to 20 felony counts for allegedly molesting his stepdaughter over a five-year period.
Bryan E. Shepherd, who turns 48 next week, was ordered to remain jailed in lieu of $720,000 bail. He is due back in Bellflower Superior Court on Jan 12.
Shepherd is charged with a dozen counts of committing a lewd act on a child, three counts of oral copulation of a person under 18, two counts each of unlawful sexual intercourse and sexual penetration by a foreign object and one count of sodomy of a person under 18.
The alleged crimes occurred between 2005 when the girl was 13 and 2010 when she was 17 and did not happen at the school, authorities said.
Shepherd -- who has been a coach at the school located at 15301 McNab Ave. in Bellflower for the past five years -- was arrested Tuesday and bail was initially set at $3 million. The charges carry allegations that would mandate a state prison sentence if he is convicted, according to the District Attorney's Office.
On Wednesday, the Bellflower Unified School District issued a statement that Shepherd, a non-teaching/walk-on coach, had been "released from his employment with the district for abandonment of his position." The district also said that his stepdaughter was a former student who participated in basketball and track programs, in which Shepherd coached.
"There are no allegations regarding any other students," the district noted.
Detectives are now asking for the public’s help in identifying any other possible victims who may have been assaulted by the suspect. Anyone with information is asked to call the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department Special Victims Bureau at (866) 247-5877.
The city of Bellflower, which borders Cerritos, is serviced by the sheriff's Lakewood Station, which is also contracted by the city of Artesia.
- City News Service contributed to this report.