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Former Hughson coach arrested on sex charges

A general manager for the Denair Community Services District, who also served as a volunteer coach for high school teams in the area, was arrested May 28 on allegations related to sexual acts with a minor, according to the Stanislaus County Sheriff’s Office.

David Odom, 38, of Merced was arrested on May 28 for oral copulation with a minor and sexual penetration of a minor.

Odom worked as an assistant coach at Waterford High 2009 and as a volunteer track coach at Hughson High School from 2021 until 2023. He also served as a youth group volunteer at the Community Baptist Church in Waterford in 2012.

The investigation into Odom’s actions began in February when the Sheriff’s Department receive a report of a suspicious incident involving Odom and a minor girl.

The report from the witness stated he saw a suspicious vehicle parked in his orchard and went to investigate it. When said he saw Odom and a female, “who looked young” as the witness described, sitting in the vehicle. The witness did not observe anything occurring but confronted Odom and told him to leave the property, according to the sheriff’s office.

Detective Ruezga, who is assigned to the Waterford Police Services, began to conduct a follow up investigation into Odom. During his investigation, Ruezga located a prior incident that was reported in 2013, where Odom was reported to be involved in a relationship with a 16-year-old female.

“At the time, the suspected victim provided limited information about the investigation and any relationships with Mr. Odom,” the sheriff’s office spokesman Detective Royjindar Singh. “The investigation was closed for lack of evidence.”

Ruezga recontacted the suspected victim, who is now an adult, regarding the reported incident from 2013, and she disclosed she did in fact have a sexual relationship with Odom in 2013 and that he was aware she was a minor at the time.

According to the Sheriff’s Department, Odom was dismissed from his role at Hughson High School in 2023 after school staff observed him holding hands with a former student. Witnesses told investigators that Odom had inappropriate relationships with female students while he was working as a volunteer track coach at the school.

Both high schools and the church are cooperating with sheriff’s detectives during this on-going investigation.

Following his arrest, Odom was booked into Stanislaus County Jail and has since posted bail of $125,000 and been released from custody.

Detectives are looking to identify any additional victims related to Mr. Odom or information related to this incident. You may contact Detective Ruezga by calling (209) 652-0724, emailing him at or leaving a tip with Stanislaus County Area Crime Stoppers through or call 1-866-60-CRIME.