Our client was a basketball coach and student engagement counselor at a middle school in DeKalb County.
He was falsely accused by a female student of having a sexual relationship with her. The student was having trouble in school and was identified by the school as a dropout risk. As a result, our client was assigned to assist her with engaging her in school activities. As a result, he encouraged her to serve as a manager for the basketball team.
Our client would drive her home from time to time because the student’s parents had no transportation. One night, the girl sent an inappropriate text to our client stating that she was “horny.” Our client immediately responded, “Huh???? You texting the right person??” She responded, “Yeah.”
Our client immediately contacted the school administrators and reported the inappropriate text. The next morning, he showed them the texts and agreed to let the school resource officer search his phone. Nothing inappropriate was found. However, when the girl’s parents were notified, they brought her to the school and she claimed that she and our client were having a sexual relationship.
Our client was arrested for child molestation and the case was assigned to a prosecutor in the DeKalb County District Attorney’s Office. Once we were retained, we immediately started gathering evidence and speaking with witnesses.
One of the first people we spoke with was a student who was good friends with the girl. She told us that the morning the girl came to the school with her parents, she saw the girl with red marks on her face. The girl told her that her father hit her after learning of the text messages. Our theory was that the girl was scared of her father and made this allegation to get out of trouble.
We then spoke with the counselor at the school who had overheard the girl say that her family forced her to make this allegation against the coach and had physically abused her on multiple occasions. The counselor observed bruises on the girl and also heard her say that it was “his life or my life.”
We sent our client for a polygraph which further established that he was telling the truth and that he did not have a sexual relationship with the student. We were able to show the prosecutors that our client had an impeccable record and a very strong reputation at the school and in the community.
After over a year of discussions with the prosecutors, we were able to convince them to dismiss the charges against our client prior to indictment. As a result, the client’s arrest record has been restricted and he is able to finally move on with his life.