A former high school athletic coordinator has turned himself in for failing to report hazing and sexual assault on the Forney (Texas) High School boys’ soccer team.
The charge against Kevin Rush stems from a 16-month investigation, which remains ongoing. By law, Rush and other campus officials who knew of the allegations of hazing and sexual assault involving members of the boys’ soccer team had 48 hours to report those allegations to law enforcement.
The charge against Rush comes a month after former Forney High School soccer coach Kris Duplissey was arrested on the same charge. Six former soccer players, some juveniles, had already been arrested on sexual assault charges.
According to an arrest warrant affidavit obtained by inForney.com, the allegations of hazing and sexual assault surfaced in January of 2017. They surfaced again in January of 2018 through a "parent contact" with the district's Human Resources Department. Forney ISD athletic director Ivy "Neal" Weaver instructed Rush to pull Duplissey and investigate, according to the affidavit. That parent contact was determined to be on January 9, 2018.
Rush told investigators that a soccer player approached him on January 12, 2018, at basketball game and told him he had been hazed. Rush later learned via text with the player the names of several other soccer players involved in the incident, all of whom have since been arrested.
"It is evident that the defendant [Rush] knew of 'hazing' in the FHS Boys Soccer program as early as January 10, 2018, based on Duplissey's handwritten document 'Hazing in Soccer at FHS' and text messages, interviews of players," reads the arrest warrant affidavit.
The Kaufman County Sheriff's Office wasn't made aware of the allegations until Wednesday, January 17, 2018.
The district issued the following statement to inForney.com after the arrest of Duplissey:
“We appreciate the work of the Kaufman County Sheriff's Department for continuing to work toward closure of this situation. In light of the pending investigation by the Sheriff’s Office, the District has not had an opportunity to conduct its own investigation, nor has the District been provided with any specific details or findings resulting from the investigation.
Despite having minimal information regarding the allegations or the investigation, the District immediately took action to address the concerns that the employees originally reported to the Sheriff’s Office. Upon district administration learning of these concerns, the FISD Athletic Department immediately implemented heightened safety and supervision procedures for all athletic teams and groups, which are still in effect today.
We understand that this ordeal has caused a great deal of heartache and pain within our community. Forney ISD recognizes our community is ready to move beyond this difficult experience, and we are continuing to focus on the safety and security of our students, both on and off the field."