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Sheriff: Not enough evidence to file charges against coach

Staff report

While there is circumstantial evidence supporting allegations, there isn’t enough to file charges against a male coach suspected of having an inappropriate relationship with a 15-year-old Melrose student, Curry County Undersheriff Wesley Waller said in a press release Friday.

Waller also said a review by officials at District Attorney Andrea Reeb’s office concluded the Melrose Schools Administration was in compliance with the statutory requirements regarding the reporting of the allegations.

Waller called the investigation “extensive and multi-faceted...” He said it included “numerous interviews, subpoenas to cell phone service providers and forensic analysis of multiple communication devices.”

The announcement comes four months after the sheriff’s office received a report on Feb. 10 of a male contract coach allegedly sexting — exchanging sexually explicit text messages — with the 15-year-old.

The initial investigation led to still pending felony charges against another Melrose contract coach, Allison Draper, 28, of Melrose. Draper faces one charge of criminal sexual penetration and five counts of criminal sexual contact of a minor. Efforts to reach her attorney, Randall Harris, on Friday weren’t successful.

Draper and the unidentified male contract coach had both resigned prior to the sheriff’s investigation.

Waller said during the investigation of the male coach, the alleged victim denied the allegations against the coach and adamantly refused to cooperate with the investigation. The coach also denied the allegations.

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