Kailua High investigates
coach’s conduct

Kailua High School athletic director Melvin Imai and principal Francine Honda are doing an in-house investigation of alleged inappropriate conduct by Surfriders football coach Darren Johnson, Imai said.

The investigation is the result of concerns brought by several assistant coaches at a meeting Tuesday. Imai did not disclose the assistants' concerns.

Imai asked the assistants to put their thoughts in writing, and got their reports at 5 p.m. Wednesday. He said he was surprised to learn that the subject matter was aired by a local TV station on the 6 o'clock news.

"At this point, it's all one-sided," Imai said. "We want to make sure the coach has an opportunity to answer these concerns. The fact that it came out on TV before I had a chance to speak with my coach about it is very upsetting."

Imai said the release of the information before the complaints could be addressed casts a "negative light" on the school.

Imai spoke with Johnson later Wednesday night and said Johnson is aware of the allegations. They met yesterday with Honda.

Johnson was reached by phone Wednesday night, but did not want to comment.

"We'll get to the bottom of this, and we don't expect it to drag on," said Imai, who added that he and Honda want to resolve the issue before the weekend.

Imai said some of the assistant coaches told him they'd like to resign from the football program.

"Some of them expressed that they would not be back, but I don't have anything official in writing yet," he said.

Johnson led the Surfriders to the Oahu Interscholastic Association championship game and a spot in the state tournament last fall. He also coached them to a share of the OIA title in 2001 and into the state tournament in four of the five seasons since its inception in 1999.


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