Victim's Mother Speaks Out About Sexual Assault - KLTV.com - Tyler, Longview, Jacksonville |ETX News

10/24/06-Troup

Victim's Mother Speaks Out About Sexual Assault

The superintendent of Troup ISD says he wouldn't change the way the school district handled a coach being accused of sexual assault. On Monday, former Troup coach Samuel Tony Sutton pleaded guilty to raping a girl and sleeping with a student. But the mother of one of the victims says she wishes the school handled the situation differently.  

Sutton worked for Troup ISD for less than a year. Superintendent, Marvin Beaty hired Sutton.

"He had a clean criminal history and good references," says Beaty.

During an aggravated assault case against Sutton, Beaty testified that he would hire him again. "If we turn back the clock, the question was, If we turned back time would we hire him again? My answer was given all of the information then, Why wouldn't I? If you could see the future obviously you won't make that decision," says Beaty.

Beaty says at one point the Troup student recanted her statement. The victim's mother says her daughter felt pressure to do so from school officials.  

"They told her she was a liar.  They told her how they were going to punish her and they told her what would happen to her.  Things like that if she continued to stick with that story. So she at that point recanted that story," says the Mother of the Troup victim.

In the end, Smith County District Attorney Matt Bingham says the evidence speaks for itself.

"We had the DNA evidence, scientific evidence and the testimony of child. So we felt like this was a case, very good case.  We are happy with the resolution," says Bingham.

Sutton was sentenced to 35 years.

"I think it's wonderful.  I wish the superintendent and principal had been sitting in there listening to it," says Mother of Troup victim.

Bingham says all of the victims and their families believe justice was served.  

Superintendent Beaty says the Troup student was never pressured into recanting her statement.

Another man facing charges. Rodrickius Wallace is accused of helping hold one victim down during the sexual assaults. If convicted he'll face anywhere from five years probation to life in prison.  

Karolyn Davis, reporting.  kdavis@kltv.com

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