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Star showjumper, 61, denies sexually abusing protégé who said she was a virgin

A 61 year-old showjumping star who competed in the 2012 Olympics has denied abusing his underage protégé who claims the horseman’s wife walked in on them. 

Richard Fellers, 61, allegedly forced his student, Maggie Kehring, now 18, into a sexual relationship when she was 17, after pestering her from the age of 16. The age of consent in Oregon, where he lives and where he trained Kehring.  

Kehring, who is now 18, went to begin training with Fellers when she was 15, and left her family in California to move in with the showjumper and his wife Shelly. She claims things took a dark turn when she was 16, and he called her professing his love. 

‘I get this call and he says. ‘I have these feelings for you, it’s been building up the past six months, you can’t tell anyone, I’m crazy about you,’ Kehring told CBS News  on Friday. ‘I sat in my room and cried the rest of the day.’ 

Maggie Kehring has accused her former equestrian trainer Richard Fellers, 61, of sexual abuse. He has formally denied those allegations during a criminal hearing 

Fellers competed in two showjumping events at the 2012 Olympics, placing sixth and eighth

Fellers competed in two showjumping events at the 2012 Olympics, placing sixth and eighth

Fellers pictured after his arrest in July. He denies four counts of sexual abuse

Fellers pictured after his arrest in July. He denies four counts of sexual abuse

Kehring called Fellers ‘a sociopath’ who used his position as a coach and respected ‘father figure’ to make advances at her when she was a minor.  

She had first met Fellers when she was 14 and idolized him. Kehring credited Fellers – who placed sixth and eighth during London 2012 showjumping events – for opening up the elite and competitive sport to her. 

She said that after Fellers confessed his feeling for her when she was 16, he continued to ask her to pursue a sexual relationship with her, even after she’d as

Although Kehring kept rejecting his offers, she said she eventually felt cornered and said yes. 

‘It shouldn’t have happened,’ Kehring said. ‘And I had said ‘No’ before it even started. I had said ‘No’ at the beginning, I had said ‘No’ multiple times.’ 

Kehring said the relationship ended when Shelly walked in on them at a Michigan horse show last July.  

Fellers was arrested on June 7 in Oregon by the Tualatin Police Department, who had conducted a months long investigation into the matter following a tip from The U.S. Center for SafeSport, a nonprofit focused on ending all forms of abuse in sport. 

They had received multiple anonymous tip-offs about Fellers’ alleged abuse of Kehring.  

Fellers was booked at Washington County Jail and released on bail, The Chronicle of the Horse reported. 

Kehring is pictured at a showjumping event in Florida in January 2021

Kehring is pictured at a showjumping event in Florida in January 2021

Fellers is pictured after winning the Rolex FEI World Cup jumping final in the Netherlands in 2012

Fellers is pictured after winning the Rolex FEI World Cup jumping final in the Netherlands in 2012 

Fellers pictured at the 2012 Olympics in Greenwich Park, London. He came sixth and eighth in two showjumping events.

Fellers pictured at the 2012 Olympics in Greenwich Park, London. He came sixth and eighth in two showjumping events. 

He was charged with four counts of sexual abuse.  

Fellers is well known in the equestrian community for his victory at the 2012 Rolex-FEI World Cup Final riding Fexible and his participation in the London Olympic Games for Team USA.

His lawyer, Howard Jacobs, did not immediately reply to DailyMail.com’s request for comment.  

‘The power in me has been restored by protecting others and ensuring that no one else will be scarred by this same experience,’ Kehring said in a statement released by her attorneys. 

‘I am so thankful for the work the Tualatin Police Department and FBI have done on my behalf and on the behalf of others in similar situations.’

The U.S. Equestrian Federation issued the following statement regarding Feller’s arrest.

‘USEF strongly believes that sex abuse has no place in sport. Protecting athletes from all forms of abuse should be the collective concern of our community. USEF urges all participants to respect the privacy of the victim and her family at this time. 

‘Please be reminded that sexual abuse involving athletes under 18 must be reported to the U.S. Center for SafeSport and the authorities. Let’s stand together by supporting victims and survivors of abuse in our sport.’ 

Fellers and his wife were both suspended by the U.S. Center for SafeSport after the allegations against him emerged. 

Shelly Fellers is appealing the ruling. 




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