Charges dropped against volunteer coach Karl Williams in Ooltewah Assault case
Photo: Chattanooga Times Free Press
HAMILTON COUNTY, TN (WRCB) -
The Hamilton County District Attorney's office has dismissed the charges against Ooltewah High School volunteer coach Karl Williams.
Williams was charged with Failure to Report Child Sex Abuse in the incident involving the rape and assault of four freshman basketball players in Gatlinburg.
The DA's office filed an order of dismissal in Hamilton County Criminal Court Wednesday, stating the charges should be dismissed "based on his volunteer status as coach and that he was not provided any training regarding the mandatory reporting law."
Karl Williams' attorney, Johnny Houston, said Williams "is very grateful and just looking forward to moving on with his life because you know basically those charges forced him to put his life on hold."
And he applauds the DA's office for dropping the charges.
"I fully respect his decision in this case and we recognize that it wasn't an easy decision, but it was the appropriate decision," Houston said.
Houston also said Williams has expressed interest in returning to coaching.
"Karl would often take kids home, feed kids who would not get fed otherwise, and Karl is just the kind of person you want coaching our children," Houston said.
Last week a Hamilton County Grand Jury indict Ooltewah basketball Head Coach Andre Montgomery on four counts of failure to report child sexual abuse.
Montgomery is scheduled to appear before Criminal Court Judge Don Poole on June 3 for an arraignment hearing.
Ooltewah High School Athletic Director Jesse Nayadley was also charged with failure to report child sex abuse. Nayadley accepted a pre-trial diversion on the conditions of completing at least 10 hours of community service and taking a class on mandatory reporting. If he completes those requirements his record will be wiped clean in 90 days.
Last week the Hamilton County Board of Education released updated policies on child abuse and neglect. The policies are more strict and clear regarding where and when a school employee should report suspected abuse.
But Tennessee law says everyone is a mandated reporter and has the responsibility to report suspected abuse.
Wednesday, August 16 2017 1:24 PM EDT2017-08-16 17:24:10 GMT
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