Slide Court Report

A former McFarland High basketball coach was sentenced to state prison on Tuesday after a 2018 incident in which he promised a 15-year-old boy a spot on the varsity team in exchange for sexual favors.

Fernando Pruneda was sentenced to two years in prison for the charge of contacting a minor to commit a sexual offense after pleading no contest in September. Two related charges against Pruneda were dismissed during his jury trial in September and another was dismissed on Tuesday, according to the Kern County Superior Court’s website.

Pruneda sent sexually inappropriate text messages to the minor attempting to arrange a meeting for sexual purposes, according to Joseph Kinzel, spokesman for the Kern County District Attorney’s Office.

“Pruneda was an assistant to the coaching staff of the McFarland High School basketball team and abused his position of trust to make sexual advances upon an underage player,” Kinzel said.