Richard Curl, banned for life last month by USA Swimming, surrendered to police after being charged with child abuse over allegations of a four-year sexual relationship with a teen swimmer.


Curl, 63, was released on $50,000 bond and faces a November 16 preliminary hearing in Rockville, a Maryland suburb of Washington. The felony charge would bring Curl up to 15 years in prison if he is convicted.

Curl co-founded the Curl-Burke Swim Club, which has since changed its name to the Nation's Capital Swim Club. Among his most famous pupils was Tom Dolan, a gold-medal swimmer at the 1996 Atlanta Olympics and 2000 Sydney Olympics.

Former Curl-Burke swimmer Kelley Davies Currin claims Curl began touching her inappropriately at age 13 in 1983 and his actions became more extensive over the next few years until her parents learned of the relationship.

The family made an out-of-court settlement with Curl rather than press criminal charges.

Currin's attorney, Robert Allard, said there is unfinished business in the matter not only with Curl but claimed that USA Swimming officials knew of Curl's abuse and covered up the acts for years.

Allard compared the situation to the recent Penn State University pedophilia scandal that saw Jerry Sandusky, a former assistant coach for the famed American football team at Penn State University, jailed for between 30 and 60 years for child sex.

"We urge the authorities, as they did with Penn State, to now look into possible criminal conduct that has occurred within USA Swimming," Allard said.

USA Swimming has said it began investigating Curl once it became aware of allegations against him.