BOULDER, Colo. (CBS4) – Aidan Atkinson, an 18-year-old starting quarterback at Fairview High School, has been arrested in Boulder in a sex assault case. Atkinson turned himself in on Friday and was booked into the Boulder County Jail on multiple felony charges after a months-long investigation. The Daily Camera first reported the story.
Boulder police say the criminal behavior took place on a party bus in 2018, at which time Atkinson was a juvenile, and they launched their investigation after someone came forward three months ago. There were multiple female victims, and they were all juveniles, according to police.
“Investigative details we are withholding on the basis of the age of the victims and suspect,” said Boulder Public Safety spokesman Dean Cunningham.
Atkinson is accused of nine crimes as a juvenile including sexual assault and unlawful sexual contact. CBS4 is using Atkinson’s name because of the seriousness of the crimes and because he is now 18, an adult.
The alleged incident occurred in Sept. of last year, but no victims came forward until Aug. of this year.
“I kind of heard the rumors over the last year, but I was kind of surprised he got arrested,” said Alana Kihn, a junior at Fairview. “I think it’s good he got arrested before the game it’s good that he’s not on that team.”
“I think it’s crazy timing that he was arrested today and big game is today,” said junior Sara Victor.
Atkinson was to lead Fairview in the 5A playoffs Friday night against Cherry Creek, but he turned himself in to authorities and was booked into the Boulder County jail. Atkinson holds the state records for his passing. He was honored as the 5A football player of the year.
As part of their ongoing investigation, detectives are hoping to talk to people who they haven’t already spoken with who witnessed what happened on the bus on Sept. 15, 2018. They are hoping to gather photos or videos taken from that night. They also are encouraging anyone “who feels they may have been victimized in a similar way” to contact them.
Friday night, the Fairview Knights lost its game against the Cherry Creek High School Bruins. Absent their star quarterback, family and friends were hoping for a win, but also hoping the team, in general, was doing okay.
“I just told my son I love him and, you know, just to focus on what they need to do. You know, they all got here as a team so it’s not just one. It’s everybody, and he just texted me back and said, ‘I love you mom,’ and that’s it,” said Miki Wildcat, mother of a Fairview football player.
Wildcat says it was clear her son didn’t want to talk about the incident, but said she planned to as soon as they had time together.
“I haven’t seen him since this morning so, like I said, I don’t know where he is mentally, buy you know, I hope that they’re all in a good place and able to do what they need to do,” she said.
Aside from extra security at Friday night’s game, things appeared normal. It’s the environment parents like Wildcat wanted. When asked what the main goal of the evening was, she didn’t hesitate.
“To win and keep on going. You know, Coach Mac has been an awesome coach. I know all the kids enjoy him so I know they want to do this for him, you know for themselves, but also for him because he’s a great coach and all the kids just adore him,” said Wildcat.
A spokesperson for the Boulder Valley School District told CBS4 Friday evening, in alignment with board policy, Atkinson is being placed in an appropriate alternative educational opportunity until the court proceedings are complete.
Cherry Creek beat Fairview 42-28.
Atkinson committed to play football in college at Northwestern University.
Boulder police requests that anyone who can help them with their investigation contact one of these two detectives:
– Kara Wills, (303) 441-3482
– Sarah Cantu, (303) 441-4382
People who wish to remain anonymous can also contact Northern Colorado Crime Stoppers at 800-222-TIPS (8477) or online at www.crimeshurt.com.