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Beech Grove High School head basketball coach suspended after arrest on drug charges

Mike Renfro has lengthy history with Beech Grove athletics
Mike Renfro
Posted at 8:02 AM, Aug 11, 2022
and last updated 2022-08-11 19:07:30-04

BEECH GROVE — The head varsity boys basketball coach at Beech Grove High School has been suspended from his coaching and teaching roles after he was arrested on suspicion of dealing drugs and driving while intoxicated.

Mike Renfro, who was named head coach in 2019, has been suspended from his role as coach and teacher, according to a Wednesday letter from Beech Grove City Schools Superintendent Laura Hammack to parents, which has been obtained by WRTV.

Online court records show Renfro was charged Monday in Henry County with dealing in cocaine, possession of cocaine, operating a vehicle while intoxicated and public intoxication.

According to a probable cause affidavit, Renfro was in possession of about 1.86 grams of suspected cocaine.

Henry County Sheriff's deputies encountered Renfro about 11:55 p.m. Sunday after stopping him on Interstate 70. He had been driving just 45 mph and was "straddling" the white lane divider as other vehicles passed him, the affidavit alleges.

While speaking with Renfro, a deputy noticed the smell of alcohol on his breath and asked if he had been drinking. Renfro then admitted to having "a couple" drinks, the affidavit alleges.

After conducting field sobriety tests, deputies searched Renfro's vehicle and discovered a folded dollar bill with a white powdery substance. When asked what the substance was, Renfro replied, "either cocaine or meth," the affidavit alleges.

The substance later tested positive for suspected cocaine.

Deputies later found several baggies containing a white substance and cash under a floor mat of the vehicle. The substance also tested positive for suspected cocaine. There were 1.86 grams in total.

There were also hundreds of dollars in cash located inside Renfro's vehicle and on his person.

Hammack's letter states, "Like you, I am deeply troubled by these allegations. Mr. Renfro has been suspended pending further investigation. The district intends to fully cooperate with law enforcement officers as they conduct their investigation. Because this is an ongoing investigation, there is little else we can share now.

"However, we know that when events like this happen, the entire school and district are impacted. We want to ensure that you have the appropriate support during this difficult time. School officials and district counselors will be available to answer students' questions during the next several days."

Renfro has a long history in Beech Grove schools athletics. Before his rise to the rank of high school head basketball coach, he served as the team's interim head coach, longtime quarterback coach and JV football coach, according to an official profile on the school's website.

He has led the middle school, freshman and JV basketball teams for the Hornet's basketball program. During the 2017-18 season, Renfro led the JV basketball team on an undefeated 21-game winning streak. Then, during the 2018-19 season, he brought the varsity basketball team to record of 18-8, a sectional championship and a regional finals game, according to his profile.

Renfro is also a 1995 graduate of BGHS and a former student-athlete. He played on the varsity football, basketball and baseball teams.

Hammack stated in the letter that Renfro passed all criminal and other background checks when he was hired.

"However, as a district, we will review our human resources practices and address any potential areas of concern," the letter states.

Court records show Renfro was being held on $20,000 corporate surety bond and $2,300 cash bond, both of which were paid.

He's scheduled to appear for an initial hearing Aug. 30 at Henry Circuit Court.