A former private-school P.E. teacher in Corona del Mar who sexually abused 19 students back in the 1980s will be released soon from a state mental hospital in the next three days over the vigorous objections of the Orange County District Attorney’s office.
At a hearing today, Orange County Superior Court Judge Kimberly Menninger found today that Alan Thomas, Rigby, now 66 and formerly of Irvine, is not likely to be sexually violent again.
But that’s not how officials at the D.A.’s office see it.
Rigby, who taught at Harbor Day School, was convicted on 36 child-molestation counts in a plea agreement that allowed him to avoid an 80-year sentence, according to a Los Angeles Times article at the time.
Between 1985 and '87, Rigby instructed 19 students to perform sexual acts for what he said was initiation into a secret club he called “The Togas,” according to a D.A. press release. Rigby also masturbated many times in front of the victims.
At his sentencing in 1989, Rigby continued to deny what he did was molestation, dismissing the acts as "locker room frivolities" and "fun and games," the L.A. Times reported.
After serving his 19-year sentence, Rigby was then moved to Coalinga State Hospital, said Farrah Emami, D.A. spokeswoman. While there and participating in treatment, Rigby kept an inappropriate piece of artwork depicting boy and girl ballet dancers in his room and gave various accounts of his current sexual tendencies to doctors.
Prior to his transfer to Coalinga, Rigby wrote a book in 2008 about being a sex offender, criticizing the sex offender treatment that he was undergoing, according to a press release.
That “demonstrates that he did not take his treatment seriously,” the release states.
The OCDA argued to keep Rigby civilly committed as a sexually violent predator and believes Rigby still poses a danger to the community -- to no avail. Rigby will be released into the community and plans to live with his sister in Pennsylvania, Michigan, or New York, officials said.
He will be required to register as a sex offender within five days of release and be listed on the Megan’s Law website. The exact date and time of his release will be determined by the state mental hospital and is unknown at this time.