The Office of State Attorney General Ken Paxton has confirmed they will be handling the prosecution of the case regarding allegations that student athletes at La Vernia High School sexually assaulted at least 10 other students.
Another source, who remains unidentified to protect his/her identity, acknowledged the Texas Rangers will be taking over the ever expanding investigation. Although the Rangers have been participating for at least a week, Wilson County Attorney Tom Caldwell also confirmed the law enforcement agency will be leading the investigations.
“There has been a growing and significant concern from the community that local individuals might have a conflict of interest and would be forced to recuse themselves to prevent corruption,” the source said. “It was actually the only way to do this. This is a small town. Everyone knows everyone. There are not many secrets and practically everyone knows the names of the victims and the suspects.”
Wilson County District Attorney Audrey Gossett Louis and attorney Caldwell both have children enrolled in La Vernia schools. Caldwell told reporters that “It’s not us kicking the can somewhere else. It’s us kicking the can to people who are truly impartial and cannot be questioned otherwise. We would do our jobs if we had to, but we also want to protect the integrity of the investigation.”
The recent arrests of ten boys’ athletic students in connection with what could be up to 25 victims over several years has rocked the small town 30 minutes southeast of San Antonio. There are about 1,075 students enrolled at the high school. The news to the small town of 1,250 is “potentially devastating,” one psychiatrist said. A father described the community as “all messed up. We are all victims.”
La Vernia Independent School District Superintendent José Moreno described the acts as coming from an “underground culture of acceptance.”
Through the investigation of La Vernia Police Department, headed by Sgt. Donald Keil, and Texas Rangers, officers learned the three adult suspects, along with a juvenile suspect held a 16-year-old male classmate down at an office campus home and sexually assaulted him with the threaded end of a CO2 air tanks.
The November 2016 crime was said to be part of the victim’s initiation into the varsity football team from the junior-varsity team. At least ten students have been identified as victims of what some are calling a “hazing scandal.”
“We’re lucky no one has died,” a credible source close to the investigations told NEW LEGIT. “Some of the acts committed on these boys were unbearably dangerous and brutal. This case goes beyond just the high school.”
Some of the alleged crimes were committed in the boy’s athletic locker room. Information culled from the victims and their families has broadened the investigation with allegations going back previous years. The source confirmed an investigation involving an 8th grade female student at the Junior High is part of the scope of the case. Parents and victims are being urged to contact the La Vernia Police Department to aid in their investigations and to provide direction for counseling and services needed.