Sheriff: Donaldsonville coach arrested for giving steroids to a student

Published: Apr. 1, 2014 at 9:07 PM CDT
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Curtis Tsuruda (Source: Ascension Parish Sheriff's Office)
Curtis Tsuruda (Source: Ascension Parish Sheriff's Office)

DONALDSONVILLE, LA (WAFB) - The Ascension Parish Sheriff's Office has arrested a physical education teacher on charges that he gave a 16-year-old student athlete steroids.

Curtis Tsuruda, 56, was arrested April 1 on charges of distribution of schedule III CDS, distribution to a student, violation of CDS law school zone, and contributing to the delinquency of a juvenile.

Tsuruda has been a P. E. teacher and a strength and conditioning coach at Donaldsonville High School since August 2013. According to his LinkedIn profile, he was the director of strength and conditioning training at Tulane University from 2001 until 2005. He was the assistant strength and conditioning coach at Louisiana State University from 1997 until 2000. He was also the director of strength and conditioning at the University of Hawaii-Manoa from 1992 to 1997and he was a graduate assistant strength coach at Mississippi State University from 1991 to 1992.

An investigation was launched on March 28 after receiving information that a coach had given steroids to the student. Detectives learned that when Tsuruda gave the student the steroid pills, he led the student to believe that the pills were amino acid/protein pills to help him perform better in his sporting activities.

"The students were under the impression that these were amino acid/protein pills and he was taking them at the direction of the strength and conditioning coach. But mom and dad had noticed there was some mood changes in the student and when they questioned him about it, they found out about the pills and they immediately went to the principal," said Col. Tony Bacala with the Ascension Parish Sheriff's Office.

Deputies say Tsuruda confessed that he knew he had given the student Methandienone steroids and told the student they were amino acid protein pills.

Tsuruda was immediately placed on administrative leave, pending further disciplinary action as warranted, by the Ascension Parish School Board Administration.

"Mr. Curtis Tsuruda's alleged giving of an illegal substance to a student is strictly against school board policy and we condemn such action," says Ascension Parish Schools Superintendent Patrice Pujol in a written statement.

Detectives took the pills to the Louisiana State Police Crime Lab where an analysis was determined that the pills were Methandienone Steroid pills, which is classified as a Schedule III controlled dangerous substance.

During the course of the investigation Ascension Parish detectives went to St. John Parish where Tsuruda currently resides. With the assistance of St. John Parish's Sheriff's Office Narcotics detectives, Tsuruda's home was searched where additional steroids were located and seized.

Tsuruda was booked into the Ascension Parish Jail awaiting bond.

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