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ARLINGTON

Karate coach gets 2½ years in indecent assault on girl

A Lexington man has pleaded guilty to indecently assaulting a young girl at the Arlington karate school where he coached her, prosecutors said. Middlesex Superior Court Judge Kathe Tuttman sentenced 52-year-old Thomas Donahue Tuesday to 2½ years in jail followed by three years of probation, said Middlesex District Attorney Marian T. Ryan’s office. Donahue’s sentence also bars him from contact with the victim, her family, or any children under the age of 16. He must also abide by the requirements of the state sex offender registry and wear a GPS tracking device while on probation, Ryan’s office said.

“This defendant took advantage of his authority as a coach by sexually assaulting a young student, violating the trust placed in him by the victim and her family,” Ryan said in a statement. “We commend the victim for coming forward to disclose what happened to her and we will continue to aggressively investigate and prosecute crimes committed by offenders that target vulnerable children.”

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Donahue, who was indicted in October, coached the girl at T&P Martial Arts in 2011. After at least one of their sessions he asked her to come into his office and assist him in taking off a leg brace, Ryan’s office said.

When the girl agreed to help, Donahue sexually assaulted her. He then gave her candy and told her not to tell anyone, Ryan’s office said.

Todd Feathers can be reached at todd.feathers@globe.com. Follow him on Twitter @ToddFeathers.
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