Southeast Bakersfield

Former vice principal takes plea in molestation case

Former vice principal takes plea in molestation case »Play Video
Donald Ricketts, then the vice principal at Bakersfield's Fairfax Middle School, appears Wednesday, July 13, 2011, in a Lamont courthouse to face molestation charges. (File photo)

BAKERSFIELD, Calif. (KBAK/KBFX) — A former vice principal at Fairfax Middle School entered a plea Wednesday in a molestation case.

Donald Ricketts pleaded no contest in Kern County court to one felony count of lewd or lascivious acts with a child under 14 years of age. Five other felony counts and one misdemeanor count were dropped.

Ricketts is scheduled for sentencing Oct. 23.

The alleged molestations happened as far back as 2005 and as recently as January 2011. Defense attorney H.A. Sala questioned the validity of the accusations back in 2011, calling the accusers "unreliable" and saying, "A lot of the information is not specific."

A 2009 complaint was investigated by the sheriff's office but dismissed by the district attorney's office after it found the allegations lacked merit.

In the case brought in 2011 against Ricketts, he was accused of molesting three minors, two of them at Fairfax Assembly of God Church and another at an unspecified school site.