Former martial arts instructor to stand trial in sex abuse case

The trial of a Springfield man arrested last year for second-degree sex abuse was set to begin Tuesday morning.

Posted: Mar 19, 2019 9:51 AM
Updated: Mar 19, 2019 6:58 PM

EUGENE, Ore. -- The trial of a Springfield man arrested last year for second-degree sex abuse began on Tuesday.

Police said 40-year-old Gerald Strebendt is accused of sexually abusing an underage female athlete he had been coaching.  

Strebendt worked as morning instructor at the former 10th Planet Jiu Jitsu in Eugene. He is also a former combat marine.

His attorney Bryan Boender said they're ready for what's to come.

"Mr. Strebendt is eager to get his day in court. This is a very important part of our justice system," Boender said.

In May 2015, Strebendt pleaded guilty to criminally negligent homicide for shooting and killing David Crofut, 53, in a road rage incident on Bob Straub Parkway in Springfield. Strebendt claimed the shooting was in self-defense, and he was sentenced to five years in prison, followed by three years on parole.

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