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Charlotte coach banned from USA Swimming after sex charge

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Jamie Thomas (Photo source: NewSouthSwimming.com) Jamie Thomas (Photo source: NewSouthSwimming.com)
CHARLOTTE, NC (WBTV/AP) -

A Charlotte swim coach has been banned for life from USA Swimming after being charged with misdemeanor sexual misconduct involving a minor.

The Charlotte Observer reports 54-year-old Jamie Thomas, owner and head coach of New South Swimming since 1997, had been on leave from the club since July.

New South Swimming has pools at the Mecklenburg County Aquatic Center, Carrington Swim Club, Charlotte Christian School and Cordelia Pool.

A phone number for Thomas couldn't be found Monday. He told the newspaper he hadn't been told of the ban.

On Monday, the governing body announced Thomas' permanent suspension for violation of the USA Swimming code of conduct, meaning he can't coach or own club teams.

USA Swimming initially suspended Thomas on November 19, 2013 following his Sept. 18 arrest in Opelika, Ala., on a pending sexual misconduct charge.

According to a report filed by police in Opelika, Thomas performed oral sex on a juvenile without consent. Thomas was released on a $5,000 bond.

An arrest warrant said the charge against him stemmed from an alleged incident in January 2013.

USA Swimming cited six violations of the Code of Conduct in its online list of banned members.  There are now 101 names listed on the site.

WEB EXTRA: Full list of people banned from USA Swimming

Thomas becomes the fifth person from the Carolinas on the list.  One other person is from North Carolina and three people on the list as from South Carolina.

Thomas was named North Carolina Swimming's Senior Coach of the Year for the long course 2009 and short course 2009-2010 season.

He was also given the Certificate of Excellence for outstanding coaching achievement in the US from the American Swimming Coaches Association.

Copyright 2014 WBTV. The Associated Press contributed to this report. All rights reserved.

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