Did 2 High School Softball Coaches Out A Lesbian Student As Retribution Over A Love Triangle?

A lesbian teenager in Texas is launching a suit against her school district for — what else? — bullying. But this isn’t about administrators sitting idly by while they were made aware of classmates taunting a fellow student. This case, involving a girl identified only as S.W., claims Kilgore High School’s softball coaches Cassie Newell (pictured, top and below) and Rhonda Fletcher locked her in the locker room and berated her about being a lesbian and spreading gossip. And then outed her.

S.W., who attended Kilgore district schools for twelve years, is described in the suit as a “happpy, athletic high school sophomore.” That is, until, S.W. showed up on March 2, 2009, for a Bulldogs team meeting and, after her teammates were dismissed, she was instructed to stay behind. That’s when Fletcher, according to the suit, “asked S.W. if she was gay, accused her of having a sexual relationship with another girl. She also claimed that S.W. was spreading gossip about this other girl being ‘Coach Newell’s girlfriend.’ The girl…had interacted with Newell at a number of school events. At the time of [the] confrontation, S.W. was dating that girl. Fletcher and Newell then threatened S.W. that they were going to tell her mother that she was gay and having a sexual relationship with another girl. They warned S.W. that she could not play in the softball game that night until they told her mother this information. Finally, they allowed S.W. to leave the locker room.”

And they carried out their threat to out S.W. to her mother, telling her S.W. was dating an 18-year-old girl. Who, uh, Newell — whose Facebook favorite quotes include “Never do anything to embarass yourself, your family, or your team” — might have been involved with at one point herself, which is what S.W.’s family believes started the confrontation. S.W. was soon kicked off the softball team.

So S.W.’s mom went to the school, reaching out to the high school principal, superintendent Jody Clements, and Board of Trustees. Those efforts were met with deaf ears, which is when the Texas Civil Rights Project got involved — and filed suit, which claims damages of emotion distress, isolation, and a violation of S.W.’s “freedom to deal with her sexuality privately.”

Generally I’d reserve this part of the post to talk about how adults can sometimes be the bullies of gay kids, but here we have allegations of a lesbian coach bullying one of her lesbian players over a lesbian relationship, and it’s like, Kids don’t need this shit.

[Hair Balls]

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  • Lame001

    Aside from investigating the bullying, the police should charge this 18 year old girl with statutory rape, and investigate whether Newell had sex with that girl before she turned 18, and if she did, charge her with rape as well. Was the other girl a former player Newell coached? If so, that makes it even worse. Jennifer Lea Burton is in jail for 10 years for being a coach who had sex with an underaged girl. If Newell did the same thing, lock her up for the same amount of time.

  • Hyhybt

    @Lame001: You assume the age of consent in Texas is 18 and there is no exception for those close in age.

  • Lame001

    It doesn’t say how old she (Newell) is, but based on the information in her facebook profile, I’d say she’s between 27 and 33. That’s NOT close in age, even to the 18 year old.

    As for the 18 year old:

    The age of consent in Texas is 17 (Texas Penal Code Section 21.11). However , “…It is an affirmative defense to prosecution under this section that the actor…was not more than three years older than the victim and of the OPPOSITE sex…(and) did not use duress, force, or a threat against the victim at the time of the offence” and is not a registered sex offender Section 21.11 (b).

    This being a same-sex relationship, even if the 18 year old is less than 3 years older, the affirmative defense is null and void, unless she wants to take it to the Supreme Court (which, honestly, I think she should if she actually is less than 3 years older). If she is more than 3 years older, lock her up.

    In my previous statement I said 18, I meant 17. Also, Section 21.12 further prohibits all sexual contact between an employee of a school (including educators) and a student enrolled at the primary or secondary school where said employee works (unless the student is the employee’s spouse). No age is specified by the statute (thus, even if the student has reached consent age of 17, it is still a violation), and violations are a second degree felony.

    So, if Newell ever had sex with the girl, and the girl was a student at Kilgore, then Newell should, under the law, be charged. There was a woman basketball coach near San Antonio a few years back who was prosecuted for a relationship with one of her 17 year old players. She pleaded out and never saw the inside of a jail, but she’ll never coach again, which is what should happen to Newell.

  • Lame001

    @Lame001: Ooops, just to clarify, if Newell ever had sex with the 18 year old, not with the girl she outed to her mom.

  • Hyhybt

    @Lame001: Yes, but you said the *18 year old* should be charged as well. Why?

  • Lame001


    Because, if the girl making the allegation is under 16, then the 3 year age difference makes it a felony for the 18 year old to have sex with her. Furthermore, even if less than 3 years separates them, because the statute says that the they must be of the same sex, she still should be charged. I do not agree with this statute, and it should be changed, but just because I disagree with a law does not mean it should not be enforced. What might come of this, if the 18 year old is charged and there is not a 3 year age difference, is that she can sue in federal court that the statute is unconstitutional, which I believe it is (under the equal protection clause). If she then wins, Texas will have to take a good, hard look at its sex laws. Remember, we’re talking about a state where it wasn’t until within the past decade that laws were still being enforced making it illegal for ANYONE to have homosexual relations, regardless of age. It is foolish to say that a 17 year old girl can have sex with a 16 year old girl and go to jail for having sex with a child, but if that 16 year old pulled out a gun and shot the 17 year old, the 16 year old would be charged as an adult. It’s a stupid double standard that exists in statutory law that needs to be fixed.

  • JT

    What we have here is young lesbian woman who has a receding hair line…

    What we also have is Texas… Where Gays learn real fast that nobody is going to make a bunch of laws to protect gay teens. Hell, they’re too busy fighting to remove our 3rd President from the History Books because he said that there was some sort of difference between Church & State…

    Oh yeah – we have one more thing… Gay Bullies. Which begs the question… If gay people must be labeled in the laws as the “victims” of bullying, then who do you label as a victim of “gay bullying”? Cheerleaders? Jocks? Cool kids? Even gayer kids? Seriously… Where is all of this headed? And do people really think they can make a “don’t be mean” law and people will just say “Oh… dang it! You caught me! Now I can’t do that anymore…” ???

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