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Perryton, TX - Former Perryton High School Football Coach, Cole Underwood, Arrested For Alleged Sexual Relationship With 15 Year Old Student

Perryton, TX - Former Perryton High School Football Coach, Cole Underwood, Arrested For Alleged Sexual Relationship With 15 Year Old Student
Published: June 13, 2024
By: Darla Medina
Last Updated on June 13, 2024

TX High School Coach Accused of Sexually Abusing Student, Plotting Getaway Marriage

According to ABC 7 Amarillo, former football coach Cole Underwood is facing federal charges for allegedly engaging in a sexual relationship with a 15-year-old student and plotting to run away with her. Underwood was first arrested on April 25, 2024, after allegations he had engaged in sexual acts with the student in his office at Perryton High School located at 1200 S Jefferson St, Perryton, TX 79070.

According to the FBI, Underwood, 29, is accused of having sex with the teenage girl, referred to as Jane Doe, more than 10 times in his school office this year. The criminal complaint states that Underwood would sneak the girl into the school after hours to engage in these illicit acts.

During a court hearing on Wednesday, FBI Special Agent Nathan Newland testified that Underwood believes "it's God's divine plan for them to be together." The prosecution presented evidence of a letter that Jane Doe was instructed by Underwood to write to his mother, expressing their desire to get married and leave Perryton.

Judge Lee Ann Reno determined that there is sufficient evidence to send the case to a grand jury and denied Underwood bail, citing the risk of flight. He is charged with enticement and attempted enticement of a minor.

The investigation has also revealed that Underwood had a history of inappropriate relationships with students. When he was previously employed by Amarillo ISD, the district received reports of him talking with students on social media and flirting with volleyball players. Though he was placed on administrative leave, the district ultimately reinstated him, finding the communications to be "innocent."

Before his arrest, Underwood had been given a "specific directive" by Perryton ISD not to be alone with Jane Doe due to concerns about their personal contact. However, the FBI said the couple continued to communicate through secret phones and encrypted messaging apps, even exchanging explicit photos.

The FBI believes there may be additional victims, and some have already come forward since Underwood's arrest. Newland stated that the disgraced coach "still loves Jane Doe and wants to run away and be married" with her, despite the grave legal consequences he now faces.

Anjali Nigam
Hello, I’m attorney Anjali Nigam. If you or a loved one is a survivor of a similar accident, I’d be happy to discuss your legal options. Call for a free consultation, it would be my honor to help you.
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Seeking Accountability and Support for Victims of School Sex Abuse

In the wake of the disturbing allegations against a former high school football coach in Texas, accused of sexually abusing a 15-year-old student, we sat down with Anjali Nigam, an experienced child sexual abuse attorney, to discuss the legal options and resources available to victims in these cases. Nigam, who has handled school sex abuse lawsuits, provided crucial insights on holding not just the perpetrator, but also negligent school districts, accountable. She emphasized the importance of victims and their families taking swift action to preserve evidence and build a strong case, while also accessing the support they need to begin the healing process.

Editor Darla Medina (DM): Anjali, what are the key things victims should know when dealing with grooming and sexual abuse by a high school coach?

Attorney Anjali Nigam (AN): This is a devastating situation for the victim and their family. As a child sexual abuse attorney, I've seen how traumatic these cases can be. The first thing victims of such atrocities need to know is that they have rights and there are ways to hold both the perpetrator and any negligent parties accountable.

DM: Can you elaborate on that? Who else could be held liable beyond the coach himself?

AN: School districts have a duty to protect students from harm, and if they were aware of any prior issues or inappropriate behavior by the coach and failed to take proper action, they can be sued for negligence.

DM: What types of damages can victims seek in a case like this?

AN: Victims may be entitled to compensation for the immense harm they've suffered - things like medical expenses, counseling costs, pain and suffering, and more. The goal is to help them access the resources and support they need to begin healing.

DM: And what advice would you give to victims and their families on taking the first steps?

AN: I would urge them to consult with an attorney who specializes in these types of cases as soon as possible. Time is of the essence in preserving evidence and building a strong legal case. Most importantly, the victim needs to know that this was not their fault, and that justice and accountability are possible.

DM: Thank you, Anjali, for providing that important perspective. These cases are always deeply troubling, but it's reassuring to know there are legal avenues to pursue.

AN: You're welcome. My heart goes out to the victim and their family. I hope they are able to find the support and justice they deserve.

Seeking Justice and Support for Child Abuse

As this heartbreaking case illustrates, victims of sexual abuse by school employees face immense trauma and challenges. However, Anjali Nigam made clear that there are legal avenues to pursue accountability and compensation. She urged victims and their families not to lose hope, emphasizing that justice is possible with the right legal representation. If you or a loved one have experienced sexual abuse within the school system, we encourage you to reach out for a free consultation. Our team of specialized attorneys is here to guide you through the complex legal process and ensure your rights are protected. No one should have to face these horrors alone - let us fight for the support and healing you deserve.


ABC 7 Amarillo

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Darla Medina
About Darla Medina
Editor: Darla is a content writer with a focus on the legal field. She covers cases of sexual abuse, drunk driving, and preventable violent crime for the Legal Herald. Contact Darla: This article was fact checked prior to publishing by this author to ensure compliance with our rigorous editorial standards. We will only use authoritative sources. Our values compel us to provide only trustworthy information. If you find an error, please contact us.
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