By DON FLETCHER
News Staff Writer
Northview High School’s former head basketball coach, most recently a physical education teacher and assistant coach at a Pensacola high school, was arrested July 9 on several charges, including felonious assault, after he allegedly attacked an ex-girlfriend.
Michael Taylor, 48, who lists a Pensacola address, is charged with one count each of aggravated assault with a weapon (felony), domestic battery by strangulation (felony), misdemeanor cyberstalking and misdemeanor battery.
Escambia County (Fla.) School System officials told a Pensacola television station Taylor was placed on administrative leave with pay (pending the outcome of the criminal investigation) from his job at West Florida High School (WFHS) when the charges were made known to them.
According to published reports, Taylor was hired as WFHS’s head boys basketball coach in 2021. He was the team’s head coach for only a year before a new head coach was hired and Taylor was demoted to assistant.
School officials said when he was hired at West Florida High that Taylor previously served stints as head hoops coach at Pine Forest High School in Pensacola and Northview High School in Bratt.
According to an Escambia County (Fla.) Sheriff’s Office report, deputies were called around 1:15 p.m. on Sunday, July 9, to a residence just outside Pensacola.
Deputies reported that Taylor “held a gun to the victim’s head and placed his forearm on the victim’s throat,” causing her to lose consciousness.
She apparently made it through the assault, as reports made no mention of serious injuries to her or anyone else.
ECSO officers also determined that Taylor “called and sent the victim multiple text messages that caused the victim substantial emotional distress.” That was the basis for the cyberstalking charge.
Initial postings to the jail website showed Taylor was held without bail in the immediate aftermath of his arrest. The site now indicates he was released July 11, but no bond amounts are listed.