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Gym Owners ‘Shocked’ To Learn Of Arrest Of Former Coach

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Robert Edward Barke (credit: Broomfield Police/CBS)

Robert Edward Barke (credit: Broomfield Police/CBS)

BROOMFIELD, Colo. (CBS4) – The owners of a gymnastics facility in Broomfield say they are shocked to learn that a coach who used to work there has been arrested on charges he assaulted two young teens.

The alleged crimes happened between 2004 and 2007, according to police, and the coach was arrested in late March. The charges allege that Robert Edward Barke sexually assaulted two juvenile males he coached from October 2004 to June 2007. The victims were ages 12 to 14 at the time the alleged assaults began.

Barke, 32, now faces 20 different counts of sex abuse, including sexual assault on a child by a person in a position of trust and unlawful sexual contact.

The owners of Xtreme Altitude Gymnastics, located on the 2600 block of Industrial Lane, declined an interview request by CBS4 but released a statement saying the following:

“We were all extremely shocked to hear about this news. It has been quite a few years since he worked for us and we knew nothing of the situation prior to recently being contacted by authorities.”

The owners went on to say that “the safety of our athletes is of paramount importance to us and we take this situation very seriously.”

Barke, who now lives in Houston, was arrested March 27 and released on $100,000 bond. He waived his right to a preliminary hearing on Wednesday and will be arraigned June 20.

Xtreme Altitude Gymnastics also has a location in Lafayette and police have not indicated if Barke was ever a coach at that facility. Barke previously was a gymnastics coach in Grand Junction.

The Broomfield Police Department is seeking information about other potential witnesses or victims who have not yet come forward in their investigation. Anyone with information that might be helpful is asked contact Detective Dale Hammell at 303-464-5733.

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