A former Rhode Island cheerleading coach and “team mother” was arrested for allegedly molesting a child “almost daily” nearly a decade ago, according to police.
Alyshia Tkacs, 33, was arrested on Friday on five counts of first-degree child molestation and two counts of second-degree child molestation after the victim, now an adult, came forward, East Rhode Island Police said in a statement.
The arrest came after a months-long investigation into the abuse, which took place over a two-year period beginning in 2012 when the victim was between 12 and 14 years old, cops said.
Tkacs, who coached for a competitive cheerleading organization, allegedly molested the victim “almost daily” during those two years in East Providence and Barrington, the victim told investigators.
Tkacs was a “team mother” at the Superior Cheer All Stars gym in East Providence when the alleged abuse took place, the former gym owner told WLNE. The facility closed in 2018.
“I do know (redacted) did not want Alyshia with (redacted) but later learned (redacted) continued to meet her at a park where Alyshia gave (redacted) gifts,” the gym owner, Dawn Castonguay, said in a statement.
“Never thought it was a molestation thing since they were still hanging out after they both left the gym.”
The Barrington Police Department is conducting its own investigation into potential crimes that may have occurred in its town.
A grand jury indicted Tkacs on the seven child molestation charges. She was taken into custody at her home in Cranston, police said. A judge ruled that she be held without bail.
She is scheduled to appear in court next on June 23.