Former Shadow Hills High School basketball coach Ryan Towner was arrested Thursday morning on charges of raping a former juvenile player.
County jail records show Towner was arrested in the Jefferson Boulevard and Fred Waring Drive neighborhood in Indio at 9 a.m. on Thursday by the Rancho Mirage Police Department.
The Sheriff’s Department confirmed that the rape investigation dated back to April 23, 2021, but incidents have occurred in the past. The victim is a minor and a former player, but it was not clarified if Towner was their coach at the time.
In the interest of protecting the victim, we will only report that the victim is a minor and a former player. We are not disclosing more specific details to help protect the victim in this case.
Towner, 35, faces charges of rape and oral copulation. He has not been charged by the district attorney’s office yet. He is being held at the John Benoit Detention Center in Indio on $ 55,000 bond.
Prison records show Towner will appear in court for the first time on Monday.
Anyone with additional information is encouraged to contact the Riverside County Sheriff’s Department – Palm Desert Investigations Bureau, at 760-836-1600, or Investigator Reinbolz at 760-836-1634.
If anyone with information wishes to remain anonymous, please call Coachella Valley Crimes Stoppers at (760) 341-STOP.
The arrest comes just a day later the school has confirmed it will not bring Towner back as the boys’ head basketball coach. The Desert Sands Unified School District told News Channel 3 athletic director Blake Arthur that the school’s principal and athletic director “are looking to take the program in a different direction.”
Towner’s biography on the school’s website shows that he graduated from Cathedral City High School in 2004. He was hired as a coach from Shadow Hills in May 2018. Prior to taking over at SHHS, he was assistant coach at Palm Springs High School.
We contacted the Desert Sands Unified School District for more information on Towner’s arrest. District spokesperson Mary Perry said they were unable to comment on a personnel issue.
Stay with News Channel 3 for continued coverage.