Sandoval County’s Magistrate Court has dismissed a criminal complaint against former Cleveland High School boys basketball coach Sean Jimenez.
“I’m happy … to move forward and be able to move on,” Jimenez, 45, said Tuesday.
Jimenez had been charged in Rio Rancho with embezzlement over $500, a fourth-degree felony in New Mexico that carries a possible $5,000 fine, and up to 18 months in prison.
Ellen Santillan, the assistant district attorney in charge of the case, filed a notice earlier this month, which states, “this case is dismissed without prejudice pending further investigation. Criminal charges may be presented to Grand Jury or re-filed at a later time.”
Jimenez said he must complete 100 hours of community service, part of the state’s Pre-Prosecution Diversion Program, to fulfill the requirements of the dismissal. The PPD, as it is known, is an “alternative to prosecution offered to selected adult first offenders charged with certain nonviolent felony crimes.”
Jimenez said he plans to do unpaid work with his new employer, Pojoaque Valley High School, within the athletic department, and possibly also perform some of his community service in Albuquerque.
Jimenez is now teaching physical education and weight training at Pojoaque Valley. He resigned in late April as the Storm’s head coach, and resigned as a teacher in late May.
According to the complaint filed in late June, one of the pieces of evidence uncovered in an investigation by the Rio Rancho Police Department, was “a recorded interview with Sean where he admitted to using the school-issued credit card to pay for food, hotel and rental car for him and his daughters to ultimately attend an iHeart Radio concert.”
The total amount of charges involved was $595.15, Jimenez confirmed.
He paid back the money in two installments, one on March 6, and the other on April 26 for the balance owed.
April 26 was the morning Jimenez’s resignation from Cleveland was announced.
He coached Cleveland’s boys basketball team for seven seasons, including winning a state championship in 2021. Former Santa Fe High coach Zack Cole was hired by Cleveland to take over the program on May 19.
Jimenez said he didn’t know whether he would attempt to coach again.
“I’m looking forward to putting this behind me,” he said.