Wisely, Cassie Newell — the high school softball coach at Kilgore High School in Texas who’s accused of bullying and then outing lesbian player Skye Wyatt, 17 — has privatized her Twitter account. Faced with a lawsuit claiming she criminally invaded the privacy of Wyatt, Newell (pictured) suddenly finds herself on the other end of things, with the media (including Queerty) quite interested in her life. Especially the part where she, and fellow coach Rhonda Fletcher, allegedly screamed at Wyatt in the locker room, accusing her of dating one of Newell’s supposed exes, and that if she didn’t “stop lying” Newell would sue her for slander. Named in the lawsuit are both coaches and assistant athletic director Douglas Duke (for improperly training his staffers), with claims of violating Skye’s Fourteenth and Fourth Amendment rights, for breaching her privacy by disclosing her sexual orientation and forcing her to remain in the locker room to receive their verbal lashing.
And yet superintendent Jody Clements (pictured, bottom) remains adamant the coaches did the appropriate thing — which included outing Skye to her mother Barbara — saying, “We feel confident we handled it the right way. But that’s why there is a legal system. We’ll proceed and let the courts decide what was right.”
Skye — to put it bluntly — disagrees completely. “If this event had not happened, I would never have told her – never,” says Skye about her forced coming out. “I would have snuck around. Even if I had gotten caught, I would have denied it. For a long time, it damaged our relationship.”
As for Skye’s mother Barbara, pursuing the lawsuit isn’t simply about righting a wrong. She’s going after Kilgore High “because every time you turn around, there’s a kid committing suicide over these types of issues.”
(NB: Though Skye’s name is listed as simply “S.W.” in the lawsuit, both she and her mother Barbara have spoken to the press using their full names, so we’re using them here too.)