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Police: 2 SHS assistant coaches accused

1 arrested, 1 sought for alleged sexual assault of students

Police: 2 SHS assistant coaches accused

Police: 2 SHS assistant coaches accused

Jeffrey Tyler Crowder


One high school assistant coach is charged with sexual assault, and an arrest warrant was issued for a second assistant coach, as police investigate two separate cases involving inappropriate relationships with teenage girls.

Statesboro High School assistant girls soccer coach Jeffrey Tyler Crowder, 25, of Mike-Ann Drive, was jailed Wednesday on a felony sexual assault charge stemming from alleged sexual contact with a 16-year-old female student, Statesboro Public Safety Director Wendell Turner said Wednesday in a news release.

On Monday, police were given information that Crowder "had engaged in sexual contact" with the teen, Turner said. Further investigation resulted in Crowder being taken into custody Wednesday on school property.

In a separate case police began investigating Friday, a parent notified police about SHS assistant football coach Luke Edward Parks reportedly entering into a "relationship of a questionable nature" with another 16-year-old female student at the school in November. "The extent of the relationship is still under investigation," Turner said.

According to police, Parks resigned from his position at Statesboro High before the incident was reported. However, Hayley Greene, the public relations and marketing specialist for the Bulloch County Board of Education, said in a statement released Wednesday evening that, "Within 24 hours of learning about this situation, both of the accused faculty members were removed from Statesboro High School, and their resignations were obtained."

Neither will have further contact with students on Bulloch County school campuses, she said.

Statesboro police issued a warrant for Parks' arrest Wednesday.

"Both cases are still under investigation," Turner said. "More charges and arrests are expected. Each case has a separate victim, and the cases are not being investigated as related."

Bulloch County Schools Superintendent Charles Wilson released a statement Wednesday evening regarding the arrests and investigations.

The Bulloch County Board of Education "wishes to cooperate fully with law enforcement and not issue any detailed statements at this time that may hinder the Statesboro Police Department's investigation," he said.

Wilson added: "Safety of our students is top priority, and while we are deeply saddened by the choices made by these faculty members, our school system will not tolerate such behavior by employees, employee misconduct of any kind, or any abuse of our students."

School officials "are cooperating fully" with police, he said.

He added that background checks on both Crowder and Parks revealed nothing amiss.

"Bulloch County Schools performs extensive state and federal background checks on all employees," Wilson said. "Based on the background checks we conducted on these employees when they were hired, neither had prior records that would have prevented them from being hired by any school system in any state."

Just a few years ago, the school system had to deal with a similar case involving a female teacher and a male student.

In July 2011, Amy Bass Jackson was charged with molesting a male teenage student while she was an eighth-grade language arts teacher at Williams James Middle School.

She pleaded guilty in February to statutory rape, sexual exploitation of children and unlawful disposition of sexually explicit material to minors. She was sentenced to a year and eight months in a women's probation detention center and 15 years probation afterward. She was also banned from the Ogeechee Judicial Circuit - Bulloch, Effingham, Jenkins and Screven counties.

Anyone with information concerning this case is asked to contact the Investigations Bureau at the Statesboro Police Department at (912) 764-9911. Anonymous tips may be submitted online at www.tipsoft.com or by sending a text message beginning with "TIPSSPD" to 274637 (CRIMES). All information is strictly confidential, Turner said.

Holli Deal Bragg may be reached at (912) 489-9414.

 

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