A former East Bernard High School head football coach, who helped the Brahmas win a state title earlier this decade, was arrested in Jackson County on an improper relationship between an educator/student charge.
According to a Jackson County Detention Center (JCDC), Jerry Donn Long, 48, of Edna, was booked on Friday, April 26. The JCDC’s inmate information about Long explains he was arrested at 9:37 a.m. and released at 10 a.m. the same day. He posted a $50,000 bond.
According to the JCDC, the offense was reported Friday, April 19.
Jackson County Sheriff A.J. Louderback did not return an email inquiring more information on Long’s arrest. But, an investigation did occur, which eventually led to Long’s arrest a week later.
However, the Edna Independent School District, where Long had worked, used its Facebook page to comment on the matter through a press release.
On April 26, Edna ISD said in part: “This morning Edna ISD was informed that former EISD Athletic(s) Director, Jerry Long, was arrested and charged with Improper Relationship between an Educator and Student.
Mr. Long resigned his position with the district on Monday, April 22, 2019.”
Edna ISD said it had cooperated with local law enforcement during it’s investigation and reported this matter to the Texas Education Agency.
Edna ISD also said there were reasons that officials couldn’t elaborate more on the matter and responded on what was said by its Superintendent Robert O’Connor.
“While we understand the community is sensitive to this issue, due to the privacy rights of the student victim, the district is prohibited from providing further details,” Edna ISD said in the press release. “There have been many comments on social media regarding this matter and Mr. O’Connor’s initial statements. Mr. O’Connor’s intent was to simply encourage the community not to engage in the rumor mill and gossip, which is detrimental to the individual involved and disruptive to the educational process. We trust the judicial system to handle the case in a proper manner.”
O’Connor used his Edna ISD Twitter account addressed from @CowboySupt to express his colorful opinion on the matter.
“Rumors and gossiping is the root of any organization’s downfall. When problems arise – circle the wagon and grab the rope and pull in a positive direction. Shut your mouth and get to work! It is time to Cowboy Up!”
The tweet was posted at 6:44 p.m., April 22, four days before Edna ISD issued an official statement through the press release.
Long had coached East Bernard to a Class 2A Division II state championship in 2012. He also coached football at Carroll High School in Corpus Christi for one year, before coaching football and being Edna ISD’s athletic director the past three years.
Edna ISD said in closing: “As always, student safety is our primary concern. The district is thankful this matter was quickly brought to light and handled in a swift and prudent manner. Edna ISD appreciates the support from local law enforcement, staff, students, and the community. As we all move forward, we encourage everyone to continue to focus on our students’ success.”