One charge dropped for former coach

One of five charges against a former Altoona Area High School assistant soccer coach accused of having sexual relationships with two players was dismissed Thursday following a meeting between the prosecution and defense attorneys and Blair County Judge Elizabeth Doyle.

Deputy District Attorney Wade Kagarise said one count of corruption of minors against Kyla A. Hollingshead, 24, of Altoona has been dropped.

Hollingshead still faces three counts of corruption of minors and a charge of institutional sexual assault.

The dismissal of the one count, Kagarise said, “had nothing to do with the facts.”

The charge was filed under a law that was revised by the Legislature in 2012, but one of the teenage girls Hollingshead is accused of corrupting was part of the soccer team in 2010, two years before the law was revised.

Hollingshead’s attorney, Steven P. Passarello, filed a petition asking that Doyle review the charge, and she scheduled a hearing Thursday.

When it came time to argue before the judge, Kagarise had time to review the charges and concluded Passarello was correct, that the one corruption charge stemming from the 2010 case could not stand.

It was by agreement that the judge dismissed the charge.

According to Kagarise, resolution of the dispute clears the way for Hollingshead to go on trial in either November or December.

Hollingshead was arrested in May for having sexual interaction with two females on the soccer team.

The 2010 incidents involved a 15-year-old player who said that the student-coach relationship changed “to a close friendship with text messages being exchanged, the defendant giving her rides to and from soccer games and practices, and they would get together and watch movies.”

That led to Hollingshead giving the girl a gift and relating her feelings about the girl in a journal.

In 2012, a similar pattern occurred with a 16-year-old. It included texts, watching movies, a gift and an alleged sexual relationship.

Hollingshead was 20 years old when she was hired as an assistant soccer coach.